Isn’t technology great? Not only can you communicate anywhere, thanks to cellphones, but, now, cars can actually stop themselves. Truth is, automatic braking systems have been around for several years, but their value is becoming more and more evident as automobile manufacturers and auto insurance companies, alike, are evaluating promising statistics that automatic braking systems are saving lives.
It’s not that auto makers think that people who drive their cars are a bunch of dummies that require constant supervision, thereby, needing cars to do the braking for them. It is, however, a fact that, as humans, some of us have been known to drift off into space at inopportune times behind the wheel and lose focus as our car slowly coasts forward at an intersection or stop sign. With automatic braking, those little bumper tappers can be virtually eliminated if your vehicle is equipped with: intelligent braking, pre-collision system, collision avoidance system, collision warning with brake support…or whatever your vehicle’s manufacturer happens to call it.
If you own one of the newer models equipped with this safety feature, you probably have a pretty good idea how it works, especially, if you’ve had to use it. On the other hand, for those who don’t yet own such a vehicle or simply haven’t given a whole lot of thought to the advantages of this technology, the theory behind the automatic braking system is to allow the car to react more quickly than most drivers can in critical situations…reducing the possibility of an accident.
On most systems, front sensors on the car read potential obstacles ahead, particularly other cars, and estimates their level of danger, whether they’re stopped or moving. As the system scans for possible hazards, it measures factors such as the speed of the oncoming vehicle and its steering angle. In the event the readings suggest an imminent collision, the car’s system will charge the brakes or apply them in an evasive response.
While more advanced systems can stop the vehicle, avoiding a collision altogether, less sophisticated systems merely apply the brakes and reduce the vehicle’s speed to help lessen the impact. Other systems anticipate an impact and tighten front and rear seatbelts in an effort to reduce the risk of injury to the driver and passengers should a collision be deemed unavoidable.
Of course, the ultimate goal of auto makers and insurers is to make roads as safe as possible with less involvement on the part of the driver. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) estimates that crash or accident avoidance systems could prevent or lessen the impact of 1.9 million crashes per year and possibly prevent one out of three fatal crashes. Although the IIHS’s optimism is based on evidence gathered over the past few years of research, it shows the effectiveness of the automatic braking systems being installed in many new cars.
So what if your car turns out to be a better driver than you? If it increases your chances of avoiding a minor fender bender or a serious accident, it’s done its intended job. Not only that…but, by helping you be a better driver, your vehicle can also help save you money on your auto insurance premiums.
Don’t just rely on your car to save you money. Check for yourself that you’re getting the best rate on your auto insurance. Why not get a free auto insurance quote today?
Do you own a newer vehicle with a crash avoidance or automatic braking system? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below.