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The Risks of Relying on Automated Safety Technology

Silbowitz, Garafola, Silbowitz, Schatz & Frederick, L.L.P. -

Modern automobiles are equipped with advanced technology that drastically enhances the safety provided to vehicle occupants. From forward collision warning and blind spot monitoring to automatic breaking and autonomous driving mode, advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) protect drivers and passengers from unexpected hazards on the road.

According to the American Automobile Association (AAA), ADAS technology can prevent 40 percent of car accidents and almost 30 percent of fatalities on the road. Annually, these systems can prevent nearly 9,500 traffic deaths, 1.1 million injuries, and over 2.7 million collisions

Unfortunately, many drivers rely on these systems too heavily at times, sometimes to the point of replacing good driving habits. Most of them do not fully understand the limitation of automated safety technology, which is why over-reliance and misuse of these systems can result in serious and fatal collisions

The AAA commissioned a report by researchers from the University of Iowa to survey motorists who drive a 2016 or 2017 model-year vehicle equipped with ADAS technologies. The study was done to examine experiences with these systems.

The following are several key findings of the report:

  • At least two in three owners of vehicles with ADAS technologies claim to trust it
  • Nearly 80 percent of drivers with the blind spot monitoring systems (BSM) were not aware of its limitations or incorrectly assumed the feature could detect vehicles passing at high speeds, pedestrians, and bicyclists.
  • Nearly 30 percent of drivers with BSM sometimes change lanes without initially looking at their blind spot.
  • Almost 40 percent of drivers with automatic emergency braking systems (AEB) and forward collision warning (FCW) were not aware of its limitations or believed the latter could apply the brakes like the former, rather than only delivering a signal.
  • 29 percent of drivers engaged in other activities while driving with ADAS technologies.
  • 33 percent of drivers with AEB didn’t know that dirt, snow, or ice can block cameras or sensors the system relies on.

Drivers must continue to practice good driving habits while using ADAS technologies to enhance their safety. While these systems are constantly improving every year, they will not replace the attention and focus required to operate a vehicle.

If you have been injured in a car accident caused by a negligent driver in New York City, contact Silbowitz, Garafola, Silbowitz, Schatz & Frederick, L.L.P. today and schedule a free consultation.

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