In an attempt to improve safety and reduce car accidents in the United States, the Department of Transportation is advocating for a radio system installed in new vehicles to prevent car accidents. The short-range radio system would allow vehicles to "talk" to each other by providing information about the vehicle's speed and direction. This technology could help prevent accidents as a vehicle could notify approaching vehicles about slower traffic and other obstructions that could result in a collision.
Vehicle-to-vehicle communications could warn drivers about dangers in the road up to 300 yards away, helping drivers safely navigate away from a crash and any subsequent injuries. The technology could also be used with current safety systems that apply the brakes or make steering changes to prevent a car accident.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said they plan to issue rules for installing this technology before the Obama administration is over. The government has the ability to create rules and standards for safety systems in vehicles sold in the U.S. It would then be up to automakers to install the communications systems and software into new vehicles.
The plan to install vehicle-to-vehicle communication systems in new vehicles is a significant step forward for traffic safety in the country. However, it will take several years before drivers will benefit from the new technology as it takes a while for rules to be issued and for manufacturers to build the vehicles.
Drivers should stay up-to-date with federal safety regulations on new vehicles and understand how new technology can help prevent accidents in the future.
Source: Los Angeles Times, "U.S. regulators plan car-to-car communications to prevent accidents," Jerry Hirsch, Feb. 3, 2014