Cars are getting safer every year – and that’s not a bad thing. Technology is leading the way for safer driving, and we’re even seeing DIY kits for installing different safety electronics that are only available, stock, in newer vehicles.
If you want your vehicle to be as safe as possible this coming year, these technologies can help:
1. Blind Spot Detection Sensors
Blind spots are a major hassle unless you never plan to change lanes or merge onto a highway. When a vehicle is approaching your car, there are times when the vehicle will be right beside you, yet you will not be able to see the vehicle in your mirrors.
Merging onto a highway is the perfect example of cars being in your blind spot.
You have to look over your shoulder, hope that you can see the other vehicle, and merge afterwards. Blind spots result in over 800,000 accidents in the US annually. It’s estimated that over 50,000 crashes could be avoided per year if all vehicles were equipped with blind spot sensors.
Blind spot detection technology provides drivers with audio and visual systems that alert the driver to another vehicle being in their blind spot.
You can find many of these systems on Amazon that you can install yourself.
While the systems may not be as robust as a stock install, they still provide drivers with an indication that a vehicle is in their blind spot.
2. Lane Departure Systems
A lane departure system has the ability to curb all types of accidents, including:
- Rear end
- Head-on collision
Lane departure systems differ from blind spot systems because they look ahead. The system’s cameras will look ahead to make sure that you’re not departing the lane. Lane departures are a common cause of distracted driving or falling asleep at the wheel.
A phone rings, you pick it up and the next thing you know, your vehicle is swerving out of your lane.
When a lane departure system is installed, you’ll be warned to get back into your lane. Warning sounds will alert you that you’re veering into a different lane and need to get back on track.
Lane departure systems can be installed using third-party kits.
3. Drowsiness Systems
We’re seeing a lot of hype about drowsiness systems, and these systems are starting to really pick up traction in the automotive world. Over one million people die annually because of driver fatigue.
And a drowsiness system will start to detect key indicators that you’re too drowsy to drive.
The systems we’re seeing will illuminate on the dashboard, often in the form of a coffee cup, to alert the driver that they need a break. The systems use a variety of technologies to notify you that something is amiss:
- Lack of steering
- Sudden steering wheel jerks
- Lane departure
- Erratic speed changes
Bosch claims that there are over 70 different signals that are present to determine if the driver is drowsy.
4. Forward Collision Warning Systems
Forward collision warning systems are installed on a lot of newer vehicles, and it is just a matter of time before they’re in all newer vehicles. These systems are able to detect if you’re going to hit an object that is in front of you.
These systems are able to reduce the risk of a rear-end accident by as much as 50%.
But there are two main types of systems:
- Forward-collision warning, which sends out an audio signal that an accident is imminent.
- Automatic emergency braking, which brakes to lessen the impact or avoid the accident.
When these systems are combined, they’re able to reduce the risk of rear-end accidents drastically.
5. High Speed Alert Features
Speeding is a common problem. Drivers will go a few miles over the speed limit and can be fairly confident that they will not receive a speeding ticket. But there are also times when drivers turn onto a road and do not know what the speed limit is because there is no signage ahead.
New technology is combining GPS data and speed limit data to promote safer driving habits.
This technology will monitor your speed and provide an alert when you’re driving too fast. Intelligent speed assist provides the audio cue that drivers need to slow down and drive more safely.
But we’re also seeing some technology being outfitted with a speed limiting function.
What this speed limiting function does is make it harder to press down on the gas pedal. The driver will have to exert excessive force to go over the speed limit in an effort to promote safer driving habits.
While not all vehicles with these systems will work to control the speed limit of the automobile, we are seeing some vehicles in Europe have their speed controlled with high speed alerts and speed limiting function.