Technology such as seat belt reminders could help rein in the auto accident death toll among teen drivers in Colorado.

Car Owners Enjoy Greater Safety and Comfort While Certain Auto Accidents Are Prevented

It used to be if you wanted the latest in technology in your vehicle, you had to pay for it. For some features, you paid dearly, so only high-end vehicles came equipped with advanced technology. Today, even the most economical cars come equipped with high-tech features as automakers work to make driving as comfortable and safe as possible.

Technology From Start to Stop

It wasn’t that long ago that drivers of high-end vehicles were introduced to a new way of unlocking and starting their cars. All a driver needed to do to unlock the door is touch the handle; starting the vehicle required just pushing a button. It may have been a ‘futuristic’ idea at the time, but now there’s a whole generation that knows nothing but the advanced technology, which is known as a key fob. Today, the fob is standard equipment.

Does your vehicle have a rear-view backup camera? A few years ago, if you answered yes, you were among the few to have it, but in 2018, it became required in all new cars.

A lot of today’s vehicle features are for comfort, such as heated seats, but so much of what you now find in even the most standard cars are far more critical in that the technology is saving lives. Consumer Reports magazine recently highlighted a situation familiar to a lot of Colorado drivers: a deer jumping out in front of a car with little to no warning. As the story notes, the driver interviewed was in a Subaru, which is one of the most popular makes in The Centennial State. The driver said that a car accident was avoided because of the car’s automatic emergency braking system, which is a component of a package of technology known as Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS). There are many other ADAS features now available including:

  • Adaptive cruise control, which will automatically slow or accelerate the vehicle to avoid a collision
  • Adaptive light control, which allows headlights to swivel to better illuminate dark roads
  • Blindspot detection, which alerts the driver when an object enters the car’s blind spot
  • Driver drowsiness detection, which monitors a driver’s movement and sounds an alarm if the system detects a driver is nodding off

Other features include collision avoidance systems, auto-braking, and GPS navigation. Moving further into the 21st century, the future is limitless when it comes to technology, including the further advancement of self-driving cars.

Technology is making Colorado’s roads safer.

A decline in deaths due to vehicle accidents can be attributed to advanced technology, especially crash avoidance features, authorities say. As reported in Forbes magazine in October, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says its research showed that 36,560 people died in vehicle crashes in 2018, which was a 2.4 percent decrease when compared with 2017.

The trend seems to be carrying over here in Colorado, as The Denver Post last December noted that the state was seeing a decline in traffic fatalities, the first decrease in six years. The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) also notes that its preliminary traffic death toll is on a downward trend, with the lone exception of teen drivers. For this age group, the trend is headed in the wrong direction mostly due to distracted driving, speeding, lack of seat belt use, and driving under the influence. Technology such as seat belt reminders and speed limiters can combat some of these issues, but human behavior is still a key factor when it comes to fatal crashes.

Moving forward, safety officials believe self-driving cars, which are now in the advanced stages of testing, will dramatically reduce traffic fatalities. That’s because computers, not humans, will be making crucial decisions quickly, cutting down on human errors that continue to cause way too many accidents in Colorado.

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