Many new cars are coming standard with autonomous and semi-autonomous safety features known as active driver assistance systems (ADAS). These systems can control car functions involving acceleration, braking and steering. They also use sensors, radar and lasers to identify potential crash risks and alert drivers.
While ADAS technology may be helpful in mitigating the risk of crashes caused by human error, they do have limitations. Relying solely on this technology could be dangerous, especially when it fails to do what it's designed to do.
How confident are drivers in ADAS technology?
The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety recently conducted a study to measure drivers' confidence in ADAS technology. What they found was that many drivers had unrealistic expectations of this technology in new cars.
“These systems assist the driver and take some of the stress out of driving, but they don’t eliminate the need for drivers to pay attention," said Dr. David Yang, the executive director of the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety.
There were 90 participants involved in the AAA study who were split up into two groups. One group was issued an ADAS feature with a fictitious name dubbed "AutonoDrive" and were trained on its capabilities. The second group was issued another fictitious ADAS feature called "DriveAssist," but were trained on its limitations rather than its capabilities.
Here is what the study found:
- 42% of AutonoDriver users felt confident in its capabilities just because of the name alone.
- Only 11% of DriveAssist users felt confident in their ADAS system.
- 65% of AutonoDrive users and 27% DriveAssist would feel comfortable eating while driving.
- 45% of AutonoDrive users and 13% DriveAssist would feel comfortable using cellphones while driving.
- 42% of AutonoDrive users and 4% DriveAssist believed that their ADAS features could prevent collisions when other cars switched lanes.
- 56% of AutonoDrive users and 27% DriveAssist believed that their ADAS features could automatically reduce speed when approaching curves.
Why relying on ADAS technology can be dangerous
Further testing and development of ADAS technology needs to be done until drivers can safely trust these features. Even then, drivers should always stay fully engaged in the task of driving and only regard ADAS technology as backup crash mitigation systems.
To accomplish this, AAA has offered safety suggestions based on the PLAN system:
- Purpose – Gaining a full understanding of the purpose of ADAS technology.
- Limitations – Knowing the limitations of ADAS technology.
- Allow Time For Testing – Drivers of new cars should test drive their cars to get used to this technology.
- Never Rely On It – ADAS technology could malfunction at any given moment. This technology should never be relied upon solely.
Contact our Indiana attorneys if you were injured in a crash
ADAS technology is becoming more prevalent in the new cars we see on our roads. If you were injured in a crash with an inattentive driver who relied too much on this technology, speak to an experienced Indiana car accident attorney at Vaughan & Vaughan.
Our law firm has been serving clients in the greater Lafayette area for more than a century. To find out how we can help you maximize your compensation, simply fill out our online contact form. We offer free and confidential case evaluations to our clients.