Road traffic increased 1.1% last year and is only set to increase. . Ending September 2013, there were 184,000 reported casualties on UK roads. However, the encouraging fact is that casualty rates are actually decreasing, as we’ve seen a 6 per cent drop on the previous year. One of the logical reasons for this is improved vehicle safety. Technology has allowed our cars to come with a range of innovative new features which serve to protect us from harm. Features such as…
1. Obstacle Avoidance
Of course, one of the most obvious ways to get into an accident is to actually hit something! Obstacle Avoidance Technology (OAT) by Ford consists of sensors in the front and rear of vehicles. Nothing new today, but OAT will warn the driver if a slow moving collision is imminent. If no action is taken, the car assumes temporary control to avoid the object.
2. Rear View Monitors
Monitors which allow a complete video camera view of the rear are now starting to appear in motors such as the 2014 Mercedes-Benz S-class. High definition images connect to a monitor on the dashboard. More camera can also be added to give a more complete vantage point of areas which are impossible to see when reversing.
3. Multiple Driving Modes
Advanced on-board computers can now let drivers use different modes when driving certain vehicles. Things like power-steering and suspension parameters can now be saved like you would a file on your personal computer. This gives different drivers of the same vehicle their own preferences for certain situations. A mode for driving on the motorway and an alternate mode for driving down country roads would certainly be beneficial from a safety point of view.
4. Inflatable seat belts
Proper seat protection is one of the main reasons that many people survive a collision. Ford have designed an innovative form of inflatable seat belt for younger passengers. A tube like airbag can deploy from the seat belt to protect the chest of the passenger in a collision. Using compressed gas in a sealed container, these belts use a cold gas system which inflates the bag for approximately 6 seconds. Enough time to save a life.
5. Blind Spot Monitor
The fourth generation Lexus has a brilliant way of ensuring you’ll never miss seeing anyone again when changing lanes. Their blind spot monitor (BSM) uses radars in the rear of the car to signal the driver via side mirror that there’s a vehicle in the blind spot. Whilst certainly not a replacement for checking yourself, it’s a great aid to prevent any accidents.
Video via Lexus/ CC BY 2.0
6. Dynamic Light Spot
More accidents occur at night, so this BMW-designed feature is ideal for protecting yourself and pedestrians from harm. A ‘Dynamic Light Spot’ can be emitted from the car to purposely focus on an upcoming pedestrian, alerting the driver ahead of time. A similar feature is the ‘glare-free beam assistant’ which detects oncoming vehicles and drops the glare from your vehicles high beams if they are on.
Of course, accidents still happen, and it’s always better to be prepared. Warrantwise provide a wide range of advice concerning vehicles and vehicle safety. Contact us today on 0800 001 4990 for a quote for your vehicle, or enter your registration in the box above.