Technology for Short-Range Communication Could Save Drivers from Accidents

We are currently in an exciting time for developments in automobile and driver safety. The development of the driverless car may be the flashiest example of advances in automation making drivers safer, but even human-driven vehicles are now available with features like with automatic braking programs and electronic stability control. While these systems offer automated safety measures that the car carries out without driver input, a new technology known as vehicle-to-vehicle communication will provide a warning system by which the car’s driver can receive notice of a crash before it happens and take appropriate evasive measures.

Back in August of 2014, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced its intention to develop federal regulations governing vehicle-to-vehicle technology, and plans to make new regulations on this technology available for public comment by next year. The NHTSA has been researching this technology for a decade and recently released a report detailing whether or not vehicle-to-vehicle communication is sufficiently developed to warrant installation in new vehicles. Specifically, the agency looked at two potential applications of vehicle-to-vehicle communication, namely left turn assist and intersection movement assist. According to the report, the NHTSA believes that these two applications alone could help to prevent 592,000 crashes every year, and in doing so, save nearly 1,100 lives. The NHTSA estimates that fully half of the crashes that currently occur involving left turns and movement through intersections could be avoided with the implementation of this technology.

Vehicle-to-vehicle communication works by emitting radio waves in a 360-degree radius around the equipped vehicle, and by reading the radio transmissions of like-equipped vehicles. Unlike cameras, sensors and radar which cars currently use for safety reasons, vehicle-to-vehicle technology can penetrate walls, buildings, and other cars, and has a much larger functional range. This technology would be able to provide notice when a driver up ahead is braking hard, or warning to a driver attempting to make a turn that a car is approaching that intersection at a high rate of speed but is invisible to the turning driver. In addition to left-turn and intersection assistance features, the communication between vehicles could also provide notice of cars in blind spots and vehicles stopped in the roadway ahead of the driver.

Despite increases in safety technology, crashes caused by driver inattention or recklessness continue to occur. If you or someone you love has been injured in a Hudson Valley car or truck accident, contact the knowledgeable and seasoned personal injury attorneys at Basch & Keegan for a free consultation, at (845) 338-8884.