Jainchill & Beckert, LLC

Accidents drop with collision avoidance systems

Connecticut drivers who have blind spot alert or lane departure warnings on their vehicles may be less likely to be involved in an accident than those who do not. Research examining more than 5,000 2015 car accidents conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety found that these collision safety systems resulted in 11 percent fewer accidents that were side swipes, single-vehicle crashes or head-on collisions and 21 percent fewer injury accidents of the same kind.

Other studies that looked at 2015 accidents and collision avoidance systems examined Volvos in Sweden and trucking fleets in the United States. This research found accident rates cut in half by lane departure alert systems, suggesting that some U.S. car drivers may be turning their collision systems off. The vice-president for research at IIHS believes that some drivers who had the alert that beeped rather than making the seat vibrate were irritated by the sound.

Another obstacle is availability and cost. Among 2017 model year vehicles, only 6 percent include lane departure warnings as part of the standard equipment, and only 9 percent have blind spot alerts. As optional add-ons offered in 57 percent of vehicles, these can be costly because they are often bundled in with an expensive higher trim level or overall safety package.

Many car accidents may happen because a driver is drowsy, distracted, drunk or otherwise negligent. This can cause the driver to drift into another lane or ignore a blind spot or to act in another way that results in an accident. When this happens, occupants of other vehicles can be severely injured. An attorney can often help them seek compensation for their losses, either by obtaining an adequate settlement from the at-fault motorist's insurer or through a personal injury lawsuit.

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