In a commitment made by nearly all car manufacturers operating in the U.S. market, 20 auto manufacturers have collectively agreed to make Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB) systems a standard feature on all new models by September of 2022. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) have both lauded the commitment as an important one for roadway safety, due to the massive safety advantages to be gained from this feature.
AEB systems use cameras, radar, and lasers to scan the roadway in front of cars for objects, slowing cars, or pedestrians and warn drivers if a crash appears to be imminent. When the driver fails to take sufficient evasive action, the system will either increase the amount of braking pressure being applied, or will apply the brakes completely independently if the driver is not braking at all, depending on the individual system. These systems can be optimized to function at lower and higher speeds, as well. AEB systems first appeared on the market in 2000, in a model of Mercedes Benz, and have since become a mostly-optional feature in a variety of makes and models. A related feature is the Front-Crash Warning (FCW) system, which uses similar technology to scan the road, but can only issue a warning to the driver of an imminent collision, and cannot stop the car. These systems are not infallible, however, and experts warn drivers that, even when driving a car equipped with an AEB system, they must remain attentive to the road ahead. Ultimately, the driver is the responsible party for any crash in which the car is involved, and cannot rely on automated driving features.
Research on the effectiveness of these features has found that they can play a substantial role in decreasing crashes. In a study conducted by the IIHS looking at police-reported accidents involving cars with an AEB system, an FCW system only, or no crash-avoidance system, the researchers found that drivers were involved in 23% fewer crashes when driving a car equipped with an FCW system, and a 39% decrease when driving a car with an AEB system. The IIHS projects that, had every car had an AEB system in 2013, there would have been 700,000 fewer car accidents, and 300,000 fewer injury accidents.
For assistance in seeking compensation for your injuries from a car accident in Connecticut, contact the seasoned and compassionate personal injury attorneys at The APEX Law Firm, in Milford at 203-877-4141, and in New Britain at (860) 900-0900.