The Technology Already Exists To Make Cars Stave Off The Most Common Causes Of Traffic Fatalities
Even if you diligently obey the speed limit, always wear a seatbelt, and would never entertain the thought of driving after consuming alcohol, you are still at risk when you travel by car, because not everyone is as cautious as you are. The biggest causes of traffic fatalities are excessive speed, drunk driving, and not wearing seatbelts, and two of those behaviors endanger people other than the driver engaging in them. Speed limits, laws requiring seatbelts, and criminalizing drunk driving have reduced the number of traffic deaths, but, according to Erin Marquis of Jalopnik, the technology already exists to make the vehicles themselves prevent or correct these dangerous driving behaviors. Unfortunately, few cars in the United States implement these safeguards. If you have been injured in a car accident where the at-fault driver was drunk, speeding, or both, contact a Columbia car accident lawyer.
Imagine a World Where Cars Refuse to Transport Drunk or Seatbelt-less Drivers
In a recent article on Jalopnik, Erin Marquis reported that traffic fatality rates were higher in 2021 than they had been in many years, and that the main causes of these fatal accidents were the usual suspects, namely alcohol, speeding, and lack of seatbelts. In an article published last May, she argued that the technology to prevent accidents stemming from these causes is neither new nor especially costly; in fact, it is standard in new vehicles in the European Union. This is how your car, if it were a little smarter, could have stopped the accident that caused your injuries before it happened:
- Ignition interlock devices connected to breathalyzers are a standard penalty for a DUI conviction, but they would be more useful if they could stop drunk drivers from getting that first DUI. Some vehicles in the United States are sold new with ignition interlock breathalyzers, where the car will not start unless your blood alcohol content (BAC) is below the legal limit.
- Most cars in the United States will make an annoying sound if you start driving without a seatbelt, but if you keep driving, the sound will eventually stop. The technology exists to attach ignition interlock devices to seatbelts, so the car will not start unless your seatbelt is buckled.
- Driver assist technology in many cars will apply the brakes if the car detects an obstacle, but the technology exists to enable cars to read speed limit signs and simply stop supplying fuel to the engine if you are speeding, thereby causing you to slow down.
Implementing these technologies may be able to prevent many traffic fatalities and injuries. If you have already been injured in an accident, though, your main concern is paying for treatment for your injuries.
Let Us Help You Today
The personal injury lawyers at the Stanley Law Group can help you recover compensation if you were seriously injured in a car accident caused by drunk driving or excessive speed. Contact The Stanley Law Group in Columbia, South Carolina or call (803)799-4700 for a free initial consultation.