Car crash avoidance technologies can work, research finds

New Jersey drivers could be safer with the widespread use of collision avoidance technologies, the results of a study indicate. Research by the Insurance Institute on Highway Safety shows that systems like lane departure warning signals and blind spot alerts can help to seriously cut the rate of car accidents and especially those that cause injuries.

The IIHS research indicates that vehicles with the warning systems installed had an 11 percent lower rate of single-car, head-on and sideswipe crashes, the type of accidents the technologies are best designed to prevent. Even more, these vehicles had a 21 percent lower rate of injury accidents. The findings were based on a review of more than 5,000 car accidents that took place in 2015 and that involved these types of crashes. The study found that over 55,000 injuries could have been prevented in that year alone if lane departure warning technology had been installed in all passenger vehicles around the country.

While the technologies can be beneficial to passengers and drivers as well as others on the road, they are infrequently offered as standard equipment when people go to purchase a new car. For 2017 vehicles, only 6 percent offer lane departure warning systems as standard equipment, while 9 percent include blind spot alerts in their standard package. The technologies are often available as add-ons or options, but they can be expensive.

Studies have shown that the vast majority of car accidents are the result of human error. A person who is injured in a collision that was caused by the negligence of another motorist may want legal assistance when trying to obtain compensation, either through negotiations with the at-fault driver’s insurer or through a lawsuit.

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