The average consumer might not notice the subtle changes in automobiles from year to year as engineers tweak and redesign various components, yet those changes are present and they can make a big difference in the functionality of any vehicle. Some alterations are cosmetic or designed with comfort in mind – a sleeker body, a driver’s seat with greater back support, etc. – but others affect the safety of passengers in the event of a collision.
These safety-related features often get less publicity and less discussion in popular culture than those that appeal to aesthetics because a typical driver is unwilling to believe that she could be involved in a car accident. Even though the average motorist experiences three collisions in his or her lifetime, there is still a reluctance to believe that a crash is possible until after one occurs. As a result, some drivers give little attention to the safety features of their vehicle until after an accident, other type of incident, or even a near-impact takes place.
In recent years, the creation and evolution of automatic emergency braking systems have emerged in both the domestic and international automobile industries as a means to improve safety on the roads. The technology is designed to activate a vehicle’s brakes when an operator fails to do so in the presence of a hazard, including another vehicle. Through front detection technology, automatic emergency brakes can be deployed to slow a vehicle to a stop, preventing it from causing a rear-end crash with a car in front of it. And since nearly half of all collisions in the Chicago area are rear-end accidents, it is good news for those who drive in the city.
Now, 10 significant automobile manufacturers have committed to installing their automatic emergency braking systems in all of their vehicle as a standard feature. Previously, this technology was available as an option and, often, only in higher end cars, trucks, and SUVs so the shift to an all-encompassing system is significant.
Audi, BMW, Ford, General Motors, Mazda, Mercedes-Benz, Tesla, Toyota, Volkswagon, and Volvo have all made the commitment to make automatic emergency braking standard in their fleet of vehicles though it is unclear when these commitments will take effect.
With the prevalence of rear-end collisions and other accidents that happen due to a driver’s inability to brake in time, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety estimates that the inclusion of emergency braking systems could prevent more than 1.9 million accidents in the United States and reduce insurance claims by 35 percent. Preventing accidents will also prevent injuries that they cause, will prevent victims from incurring financial harm stemming from these missed collisions, and will save lives each and every year.
However, until all accidents in the Chicago area are prevented, collisions continue to happen every day and continue to injure those who are involved. If you were hurt in a car accident or if your loved one was injured or killed, make sure you understand whether you have a valid claim for your injuries and whether you are entitled to financial compensation.
If you have questions, the personal injury lawyers at Abels & Annes, P.C. are standing by 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year to take your call toll free at (855) 529-2442 or locally at (312) 924-7575. We offer all victims a free, no-obligation case consultation and we keep everything discussed confidential so do not hesitate to reach out to us now.
All of the lawyers at Abels & Annes, P.C. believe in fighting for those who have been injured and we want to fight for you as well.
Prior Blog Entry:
Why Back and Neck Injuries after a Car Accident Should Never Be Ignored, Chicago Personal Injury Lawyer Blog, published September 18, 2015.
10 major brands will put automatic brakes in all cars, by Justine Hofherr, boston.com, published September 14, 2015.