According to a report released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, motor vehicle accidents involvingdistracted driving killed 3,477 peopleand injured 391,000 people in 2015. There are many things that can distract you while you are driving, ranging from calling and texting to fiddling with the entertainment system and adjusting the air-conditioner. These activities can cause you to take your eyes off the road for a few seconds or more, which can increase your chances of getting into an accident. Fortunately, new technologies have been developed to prevent distracted driving and keep you safe on the road. Here are a few of them.
Hands-Free and Voice Control Systems
Using your cell phone or fiddling with controls on the dashboard does not only make you lose sight of the road; it may also cause you to take your hands off the steering wheel. Now, almost every vehicle is equipped with Bluetooth connectivity to enable you to use your phone or other mobile devices hands-free. Also, voice-activated controls are available to allow you to use voice commands to control the systems and features in your vehicle, such as your mobile device, navigation system, audio system, climate control, and others.
Nodding off while drivingcauses more than 100,000 accidents in the US every year, according to Esurance. Many automakers are now offering monitoring systems that can detect drowsiness and provide alerts to wake you up. These alerts can be sensory or audible warnings, such as an illuminated coffee cup icon, chime, tap on the brakes, or a tug on the seat belt.
Lane Departure Warning
When you are not focused on the road, your vehicle may stray over the road marker and collide with another vehicle. Alane departure warning systemcan help prevent accidents by giving you a warning or physical alert, such as vibrating the seat or steering wheel. A more advanced system can nudge the steering wheel or apply brakes to guide your car back into your lane.
Dispatching and Loading App
In the past, truckers had to make long phone calls, spend substantial time booking loads, and interact with cumbersome platforms in order to plan dispatches and take on loads. Sometimes, they may be forced to perform these activities while driving. Invented by Bill Busbice Jr, Harry Hover, and Paul Svindland, a new app called HWY Pro makes it possible for truckers to plan thousands of loads in one go. This enables them to minimize the need to communicate while they are on the road, so that they can focus on driving.
While technology can help reduce distracted driving, it cannot guarantee safety on the road. You still need to make a conscious effort to remain undistracted in order to avoid accidents.