Right now, Las Vegas is hosting CES, the Consumer Electronics Show and one of the most anticipated annual events in the tech world. Last year, more than 170,000 visitors participated in CES which took over approximately 2.2 million net square feet of exhibit space. With so much room and so many people to experience the event, designers, companies, and startups are showing off their best products to this year’s participants.
One of the biggest things making its debut this year is a concept car by BMW. This concept vehicle, dubbed i8, is getting attention because it has no rear view mirrors, leading many to wonder whether it is a safe design for a vehicle and whether other manufacturers will soon follow suit.
From the outside, the i8 does not look drastically different than many other cars that are being made today. But a closer look reveals that the outside side view mirrors on the driver’s side and passenger’s side are gone, replaced by smaller cameras pointed towards the back of the vehicle. Gone too is the rear view mirror inside the vehicle, mounted on the windshield, and replacing it is a screen that displays images from the two side view cameras and a third camera mounted on the rear windshield.
Though there are three images being broadcast to the interior display, the display does not have three separate views. Instead, the images from the three cameras are combined to show one continuous image of the conditions surrounding a car, ideally enhancing a driver’s ability to monitor changing traffic conditions while eliminating the blind spots that exist with the use of traditional mirrors.
Currently, federal laws require that all vehicles on American roads contain rear view mirrors, which means that if the BMW i8 is introduced into the market tomorrow, it would be illegal to drive it on public roadways. However, this new design is leading others to consider the implications for the future. If cameras increase the visibility of a driver and eliminate the inability to see some areas around a car, the thought is that car accidents would decrease, especially those that involve merging and changing lanes.
Chicago experiences thousands of collisions each year and if this technology can help reduce that number, the injuries and damages that stem from some collisions may be avoided entirely.
Until all car accidents are eliminated, crashes in Illinois will keep happening and will keep harming our citizens. If you were the victim of a car accident or if someone you love was injured or killed, call the legal team at Abels & Annes, P.C. toll free at (855) 529-2442 or locally at (312) 924-7575 for a no-cost, no-obligation case consultation about your options. If we represent you in your case, we will never charge you a fee unless we make a recovery on your behalf and we will fight for the best possible outcome for you.
Prior Blog Entry:
I Was In a Hit-and-Run in Chicago. Now What?, Chicago Personal Injury Lawyer Blog, published January 7, 2016.
BMW shows off mirrorless car at CES, by Hope King, CNN Money, published January 6, 2016.