How the U.S. determines what makes a car safe
Safety advocates, officials from the government and industry alike are concerned by recent increases in traffic fatalities.
The toll — 1.36 fatalities per 100 million vehicle miles traveled — has been called “a national crisis”Pete Buttigieg (U.S. Secretary Of Transportation)
Despite this, driving in cars today is safer than in 1980, when there were 3.36 traffic fatalities per 100,000,000 miles.
Auto safety history is a story of crucial inventions, political struggles over which features automakers need to put in their vehicles and what motorists should do on the roads.
In past years — before those inventions and regulatory feuds — vehicle safety was mostly an afterthought, while today the three-point seatbelt, child safety seats and airbags are ubiquitous.
These automakers include HondaAnd General MotorsInnovators are shifting to new technology like driver assistance systems in order to make it possible for cars not only be safer but also reduce traffic fatalities and crashes.
Safety advocates are excited about some of the new tools for driver assistance, such as automatic emergency brake and pedestrian detection systems.
These modern systems pose new safety issues. The recent rise in traffic fatalities shows that even with all of the advancements, driving in cars still poses risks.
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