Experience Brings Results

New auto features could help avoid pedestrian accidents

Pedestrian safety is a major topic in Oregon and across the United States. Because there are so many dangers on the road, steps are being taken to reduce the number of crashes. Lawmakers, law enforcement and car companies are seeking to find strategies to improve safety. One way this is being done is by installing systems in new vehicles to recognize pedestrians and issue a warning to the driver. However, research finds that this new technology has yet to be perfected.

A study from AAA says that the systems still have flaws that must be worked out. Four vehicles with the technology were tested. They had the ability to detect pedestrians and had automatic emergency braking. The vehicles traveled at various speeds and the dummies standing in for pedestrians were set up to use different behaviors. The systems did not work at all at night, which is problematic since three-quarters of all fatal pedestrian accidents occur at night.

If the vehicles were traveling at 30 mph or higher, the systems failed. When the vehicles were going 20 mph, 89% of the tests resulted in a collision when a child came out from between two parked vehicles. Eighty percent of adults who had their backs to the vehicle were hit when the vehicle was traveling 20 mph. Right turns resulted in an auto-pedestrian accident every time. Even when the systems were successful, such as when it was an adult crossing with a vehicle traveling 20 mph, a collision occurred 40% of the time.

Safety features and campaigns to educate drivers on sharing the road with pedestrians aside, these collisions continue to happen at an alarming rate. When there is a crash between an automobile and a pedestrian, the pedestrian will ultimately get the worst of it with serious injuries, medical expenses, lost time on the job, long-term problems and more. For help after an auto-pedestrian accident, a victim should contact a law firm experienced in these cases.

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