How new technology can help drivers avoid serious injury

One of the first notable vehicle safety features was the third brake light. Sometimes called the center high-mount stop lamp, it became a mandatory addition to cars and trucks in 1986.

New safety technology has surfaced ever since to help prevent injuries in car crashes. Here are five of the most sought-after features on current models.

Automatic Emergency Braking

A car with AEB, or automatic emergency braking, senses a possible collision. The system applies the brakes before the driver does. Studies show that vehicles fitted with the AEB system can reduce rear-end collisions by 50 percent.

Adaptive Cruise Control

Many new cars have adaptive cruise control or AEB. This system employs the use of sensors and radar mounted inside the grill of the vehicle to maintain a safe driving or stopping distance from the vehicle in front.

Rear-view Camera

The design of these cameras features a wide-angle lens so the driver can see what is happening behind the car. For example, the rear-view camera protects children and animals who may be in the way of a vehicle backing out a driveway.

Blind Spot Detection

You may still look over your shoulder or use your side mirrors to see whatever is coming up behind you. However, the blind spot detection system finds what you might miss. Small orange and yellow lights in your door mirrors serve to warn you.

Lane Departure Warning

If your car wanders outside the white lines, the lane departure alert buzzes in your steering wheel or seat to warn that you are drifting. It is often combined with a lane-keep feature that guides you back inside those lines.

As drivers, we are accustomed to having seat belts and airbags, and experience shows they help keep drivers and passengers safe. However, more is better. When you consider the devastating consequences of a car crash, such as a traumatic brain injury, paralysis or loss of limb, you welcome any new safety features that help you and your loved ones avoid the possible catastrophic results of a collision.

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