Car manufacturers are edging a lot closer to making cars that don’t get into accidents. The latest research shows that Crash Avoidance Systems are reducing accidents and helping to lower car insurance rates. Buying cars with CAS’s could soon mean much lower insurance rates.
These cars and trucks are coming equipped with forward collision detection and back over warnings, the types of improvements that can save lives. And one new technology is adaptive headlights which shine in the direction the car is moving to.
Recent research suggests that driver error is the cause of 93% of accidents. Take the driver out of the equation and perhaps you have a perfect driving record. To support that assertion, let’s take a look at what’s happened with Google’s driverless car. The Google driverless car (Google Chauffer) or autonomous vehicle is a software driven automobile as pictured here. The car has driven 300,000 miles now without an incident while it was in computer-controlled mode. New York City’s mayor Bloomberg is purportedly ready to convert all yellow cabs in NYC to Google autonomous vehicles. This latest Google product could make Google the biggest company in the world, ahead of Apple.
Obviously, the technology is here. The major car manufacturers are equipping some of their new models with CA systems that sense pending collisions, apply the brakes, watch for traffic in turns, watch the driver’s blind side, and help avoid backing over a person or hitting a pedestrian on the road.
With drivers speeding, tailgating, and texting while driving, it stands to reason that this new technology could save lives. Research shows it is reducing property liability claims and reducing accidents by 10% overall.
How do the cars do it? They’re equipped with either radar, laser, or other sensing devices. Subaru has been awarded the best new forward collision prevention system for their Legacy and Outback models.
The US Highway Loss Data Institute found that forward collision avoidance systems, particularly those that can brake autonomously, along with adaptive headlights, which shift direction as the driver steers, show the biggest crash reductions in the data provided by major manufacturers.
Matt Moore, HLDI vice president said “So far, forward collision technology is reducing claims, particularly for damage to other vehicles, and adaptive headlights are having an even bigger impact than we had anticipated.”
There are demands to make CA systems mandatory on all cars. A lot of cyclists and pedestrians might well breathe a sigh of relief for that.
Collision avoidance and driver-less technology are still new, but within a few years, we should have substantial data on their effectiveness. If all does well, we could see big reductions in claims, damages and injuries. And your insurance premiums could fall substantially.
We have to keep in mind that many older models cars do not have this technology and their accident rates will likely not change.