The Evolution of Auto Safety: Does Better Technology Really Help?
It’s hard to look at any industry without recognizing the technological changes and widespread evolution that have taken place in the last decade alone. Motor vehicles had few safety features other than the vehicle itself when they first hit the scene, but due to new uses for radar as well as other technological advances, cars have more safety features than people would’ve ever imagined 50 years ago.
The question arises, though, as to whether this new technology actually makes people safer. Luckily, you don’t have to look too far to find an answer.
Advanced Auto Technology
To understand the new safety features, and whether they are truly making us safer, let’s take a look at some of the latest developments in the auto industry. You have undoubtedly seen recent commercials where newer model vehicles can actually apply the brakes on their own, without the driver taking action. The car literally uses radar devices to recognize when a vehicle is moving too quickly towards another object.
In addition, new applications of old technologies – such as rear-end video cameras – make our streets much safer for pedestrians as well. Even the newest electric cars have added revving sounds, which sound just like a regular vehicle approaching, in order to warn pedestrians. These innovative advancements aren’t anything close to an all-inclusive list, but they’re definitely a good start.
Does Newer Mean Safer?
What’s the point of all the new technology, however, if they don’t make us safer? Luckily, drivers really don’t have to worry about this. Studies actually show that car accidents have, on a worldwide scale, increased over the past few years. In fact 2012, according to the Huffington Post, marked the first increase in fatal car accidents in the prior five years. Even with this increase, however, automobile related deaths have been decreasing.
Unfortunately, even vehicles that are meant to be safe can still cause accidents if defective parts or workmanship are involved. And of course negligent drivers can always cause a wreck. The Google driverless car, for instance, has proven to be absolutely safe; yet it has still been in a few accidents due to the other driver’s negligence. Just because a car has safety features doesn’t mean the driver is less responsible.
Steer Clear of Accidents
According to insurance industry research, the average driver will have to file an auto accident claim once every 17.9 years, but those who take precautions can ensure that they don’t become one of these statistics. The main priority is that you do not engage in distracted driving. Nearly one in five accidents in 2010 were related to this behavior, so it’s essential to pay attention to the road.
You should always follow appropriate traffic laws, because the most high tech advancements in the world cannot always protect you from dangerous driving. Speeding, which is one of these high risk behaviors, actually occurs in one third of all fatal crashes. This makes it obvious that safe driving should always accompany safety technology.
Getting a driver’s license is a rite of passage for a teen, but as adulthood comes around it becomes more of a necessity. Luckily, car manufacturers have recognized the need and demand for safer vehicles, and this has led them to adjust more responsibly in their manufacturing. Technology will undoubtedly continue making vehicles safer, and hopefully one day, motor vehicle deaths will truly be negligible.