The National Transportation Safety Board announced this week that it is recommending that collision avoidance systems be installed in all new commercial trucks, as well as non-commercial vehicles. These systems detect traffic or obstacles in front of the vehicle and warn drivers. Some will even bring the vehicle to a stop automatically to prevent a truck accident.
While the NTSB doesn’t have the authority to mandate a new rule themselves, they are lobbying the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, auto manufacturers, and industry regulators to equip commercial and non-commercial vehicles with the safety feature.
What the Collision Avoidance System Does
The system would warn drivers if they may be involved in a potential collision, begin braking for the driver if there is no response, and if necessary, bring the car to a complete stop. All of this would occur with no input from the driver.
According to the NTSB, approximately 1,700 people died and a half a million people were injured as the result of rear-end crashes in 2012.
The NTSB estimates that vehicles equipped with automatic collision avoidance technology could prevent 80% of deaths and injuries caused by rear-end crashes.
Some people are concerned that mandating additional systems like this could increase tractor-trailer costs; and automakers are quick to point out that these systems are optional add-ons for many other vehicles.
Cost of Safety Features
“You don’t pay extra for your seatbelt,” said NTSB Chairman Christopher Hart; arguing that safety devices should come standard. “You shouldn’t have to pay extra for technology that can help prevent a collision.”
The add-ons remain optional largely due to this financial obstacle, however some don’t believe that the add-on would benefit highway safety regardless of price.
Despite successful test results, several critics still doubt the infallibility of the collision avoidance systems. The autonomous braking systems have been reported to trigger for no reason, increasing the risk of rear-end collisions.
What if you’re in a truck accident?
Accidents involving commercial trucks can be traumatic, and yield sever injuries and even fatalities. If you’ve been involved in a semi-truck accident, contact Schultz & Myers Personal Injury Lawyers as soon as practical. Our personal injury lawyers will fight tooth and nail to get you the compensation you deserve.