Honda Focuses Research on Reducing Pedestrian, Driver, and Motorcycle Accidents

by | Sep 13, 2013 | Car Accident, Motor Vehicle Accident, Motorcycle Accident, Pedestrian Accident

Honda, one of the world’s leading auto makers, debuted some interesting new safety technologies in Detroit on August 29 as part of a research project to reduce car collisions, pedestrian fatalities, and motorcycle crashes.

The advanced vehicle and pedestrian tracking technology employs on-board microchips in vehicles and cell phones to ping other users in the area. The chips extrapolate data on speed and trajectory, predicting collisions based on data from other drivers, pedestrians, and motorcycle riders on the road. In a nutshell, Honda’s innovation warns road users about potential crashes.

Human error was a significant factor in vehicle crashes that claimed 7,200 American lives during the first three months of 2013, according to federal data. Honda’s work is tailored to build “smarter” cars that can prevent traffic accidents when the driver makes a mistake. A screen inside the car or on the face of a phone sends out an alert when it senses a possible traffic crash to alert a driver, motorcyclist, or pedestrian of impending danger.

High tech cars are popular because innovative designs save energy and have advanced safety features. The Toyota Prius hybrid is popular in part for its rear view camera, which allows drivers to see what they are backing up into without having to crane their necks backward. One drawback to the Prius is that it is nearly silent, so it’s hard for pedestrians to hear. In response to the problem, Toyota designed the 2012 model of the car to make noise so that it would be safer to share the road with.

Honda’s vehicle-to-pedestrian system uses a computer chip to communicate with a chip in the cell phones of pedestrians. It determines the pedestrian’s speed and direction and displays an image of a pedestrian and warns the driver to brake if a crash appears imminent. If the driver fails to respond, the car applies the brakes automatically. Honda’s project hopes to blend human intelligence with digital alarms to create a safer driving environment for all.

The U.S. Department of Transportation launched the connected-vehicle safety program a year ago. The research program is producing data to help safety officials regulate these cars in the future.

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