At their core, car accidents are inherently unexpected events that only some of the time can be avoided. Two common causes behind avoidable accidents are obstructions in the roadway and distracted driving. While road crews do their best to clean up roads and highways of clutter, flat tires and other types of vehicle damage are unfortunately too common. Similarly avoidable, whether applying makeup, eating in the car, trying to look up sports scores or, perhaps most infamous, texting with friends, Louisiana drivers and those across the United States often try to multi-task to pack more activity in their day. The problem with this is that, all-too-often, carrying out tasks while driving can cause a collision that can have disastrous results, both financially and physically.
The North American International Auto Show opened to the public this week in Detroit and amidst all the new models of cars are a variety of technological features aimed to help drivers avoid catastrophe. While major manufacturers brought along show features, like the Ford VIRTTEX Driving Simulator that replicates distracted driver scenarios in a booth, a variety of parts and technology demonstrations show promise in accident avoidance.
One type of new age tech that is creating buzz is V2X technology, wherein cars are able to communicate and, thus, avoid collisions, signal road conditions and alert to traffic jams. DENSO, a Japanese automotive part company, recently revealed a myriad of technology, including their Active Safety systems, that use monitoring provisions to detect and regulate against car problems. Beyond detection, though, DENSO has prioritized human machine interface (HMI) technology that helps prevent accidents and maintain driver attention. In all, the NAIAS featured an assortment of safety efforts (see the NTSB Chairman’s summary here) all geared to give drivers a technological advantage.
Many of the examples featured above highlight the everyday challenge of trying to pack as much into our days as possible while navigating America’s roads. Though technology can help us focus on what is important and avoidable, it is also important to keep in mind the best avoidance system for distracted driving: yourself. By committing to focusing in the car and restricting use of cell phones and other devices to voice-based efforts, you can help avoid being the responsible party in a car accident.
In the event, though, that you are the victim in a car accident you suspect was caused by reckless driving, it is important to know your rights, as well as to document as much of the incident as possible.