Jeremy M. Mattox
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Automatic Emergency Braking Systems Slated to Become Standard Features

Picture of a brake

Twenty different auto manufacturers, whose products represent a 99% share of the U.S. new vehicle market, have recently announced their voluntary commitment to make Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB) systems a standard feature on all new vehicles by fall of 2022. Both the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) have publicly applauded the commitment as one that will save thousands of drivers and passengers from injury.

AEB systems are one of the many new automated driving features appearing on new vehicles. These systems already have a very strong record of promoting safety but have thus far largely been available only on luxury car models or as an add-on feature in mid-level models. Here’s how the systems work: the car is equipped with a system of lasers, cameras, and radar which scan the road ahead for slowing traffic, objects, or even pedestrians. Depending on the model, these systems can be calibrated to scan the road immediately ahead in slower city traffic, or farther in the distance for driving at highway speeds. When the systems identify an object with which the car is on course to collide, the driver will hear a warning to either change course or apply the brakes. If the driver does not take action, the automation kicks in. Cars equipped with Dynamic Brake Support can automatically increase the amount of braking power being supplied by the driver to either avoid the crash or reduce the force of impact. Cars with Crash-Imminent Braking can apply the car’s brakes without any action being taken by the driver.

The NHTSA estimates that approximately 33% of all car accidents reported to police involve a rear-end collision, which AEB systems do an excellent job at preventing. In studies conducted by the IIHS, police-reported crashes occurred 39% less frequently in cars equipped with AEB systems, with accident injuries occurring 43% less frequently. It is important to note, however, that even with increasing numbers of automated features, drivers remain responsible for the accidents caused by their cars. A driver of a car equipped with AEB must remain vigilant while behind the wheel. Should the system fail to warn of or prevent an accident, that driver will nevertheless be liable for any injuries or property damage caused by their car.

If you or a loved one have been injured in a Kentucky car or truck accident, contact the knowledgeable, compassionate, and trial-ready Georgetown personal injury attorney Jeremy Mattox for a consultation on your case, at 502-867-6766.

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