Do Vehicle Safety Features Actually Reduce Accident Rates?

driver using vehicle's back-up camera

Most cars on the market today are outfitted with an array of advanced safety features that go far beyond the standard seatbelts and airbags. Not only do these advanced features protect drivers in the event of collisions, but they also help prevent accidents from occurring in the first place.

Several organizations have conducted research in recent years to determine whether modern advanced safety features such as blind-spot detection and collision warning systems are actually reducing car accidents. The research so far indicates that they are indeed effective, although just how effective is less clear.

Let’s take a look at what these safety features are, how effective they are at reducing accidents, and whether you should make them a priority when shopping for a new vehicle.

What Are Advanced Safety Systems?

Advanced safety systems’ basic function is to assist motorists when parking or driving by reducing the chance that human error will cause an accident. This represents a significant advancement over traditional safety features like seatbelts, airbags, and crumple zones, which only protect vehicle occupants during collisions.

Commonly referred to as “crash-avoidance technologies,” these modern safety features are designed to protect drivers from causing collisions in the first place. Some common advanced safety systems include:

  • Adaptive cruise control
  • Automatic emergency braking
  • Blindspot detection
  • Collision warning
  • Cross-traffic alert
  • Forward and rear collision warning
  • Lane-departure warning
  • Pedestrian detection
  • Road sign recognition

Are Vehicle Safety Features Actually Reducing Car Accidents?

Research has shown that advanced car safety features do indeed reduce car accidents. According to a study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), crash avoidance technologies reduced car accidents in various ways, such as:

  • Forward collision warning technologies reduced front-to-rear crashes by 27%, and front-to-rear crashes with injuries by 20%.
  • Forward collision warning technologies with autobrake reduced front-to-rear crashes by 50% and front-to-rear crashes with injuries by 56%.
  • Blindspot-detection technologies reduced lane-change crashes by 14%, and lane-change crashes with injuries by 23%.
  • Rear automatic braking reduced backing-up collisions by 78%.

These numbers suggest that the answer to the question, “Do modern vehicle safety features actually make driving safer” is a resounding “yes.”

Should You Buy A Car With Advanced Safety Systems?

Purchasing a vehicle is a big decision with many factors to be weighed. Every motorist has different needs and also different budgets. Advanced safety systems can be pretty expensive (and expensive to repair), so you’ll have to weigh these costs against the costs of not having the extra safety features that, according to research, significantly reduce both collisions and injuries.

Whether or not you ultimately decide to purchase a vehicle with these features, they definitely warrant significant consideration.

Contact a Car Accident Lawyer for Help Seeking Compensation

While advances in technology have the power to reduce accidents, they have not been able to eliminate them. If you have been involved in an accident caused by a negligent driver, you could be entitled to compensation for your medical expenses, lost earnings, property damage, pain and suffering, and more.

Contact the car accident attorneys of Poisson, Poisson & Bower, PLLC today to find out more during a free consultation.