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Accident avoidance technologies

New car manufacturers have several new technologies available that assist drivers with avoiding accidents by speeding up their reaction times. However, Nebraska residents may be surprised to learn that these technologies are typically only available as additional options for purchase in addition to the vehicle's standard package.

Because of the help these technologies could provide in reducing the number of serious personal injury accidents in the United States each year, the National Transportation Safety Board has called for the federal government to mandate the inclusion of the technologies for every new vehicle that is offered for sale. The three most common types of accidents are rear-end collisions, accidents caused by lane changes and run-off-the road accidents. According to the agency's study, requiring electronic control stability technology on all new vehicles could reduce such accidents by 40 percent in passenger cars and 70 percent in SUVs.

In a study published by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, that agency found that if such systems had been required on the nation's fleet of commercial trucks, between 8,597 and 18,013 rear-end semi-truck collisions could have been avoided between 2001 and 2005. The available technologies include such things as speed-limiting controls, driver alerts, lane-departure warning systems and tire pressure monitoring systems in order to warn drivers in advance of impending dangers.

By improving the ability of the driver to react, fewer accidents and thus fewer injuries could result. However, even with such measures in place, many people may be seriously injured in car accidents. Those who are hurt due to negligent or distracted driving by another may be able to hold the at-fault driver liable for damages by filing a personal injury lawsuit. Through a lawsuit, injured victims may be able to recover compensation for the cost of treating injuries and other losses associated with the accident.

Source: National Transportation Safety Board, "Mandate Motor Vehicle Collision Avoidance Technologies", November 30, 2014

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