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Despite vehicle safety features, pedestrians are still at risk

You and other Florida residents know that pedestrians and bicyclists have little chance to escape an accident involving a vehicle unscathed. When a vehicle comes barreling at a pedestrian or cyclist with a reckless or negligent driver behind the wheel, the chances of severe or even fatal injuries to the person outside the vehicle are high.

In general, people want the roadways to be safer, and these days, technology exists that can help drivers pay more attention to the road and avoid collisions. However, not all vehicles come with these features, and some automobile manufacturers do not offer them. Plus, some drivers do not want the features on their vehicles.

Can technology make roads safer?

Studies have shown that recent technological advancement can make driving safer under certain circumstances. However, some features may not turn on until a vehicle travels at highway speeds or when in close proximity to another vehicle. In some cases, those features may not detect smaller objects, like a person. Still, some manufacturers have implemented pedestrian detection features, but unfortunately, they are not foolproof.

BMW, Volkswagen, Honda and other companies have taken steps to include pedestrian detection features on their newer vehicles. The features work by stopping the vehicle when it detects a pedestrian in the vehicle's path. However, the majority of fatal pedestrian accidents take place at night, and studies have found that these detection devices are essentially ineffective at night. Additionally, if a vehicle travels above a maximum speed, the detection devices often do not have enough time to stop the vehicle before a collision takes place.

Not all features are the same

Though pedestrian detection features can seem like a good idea, reports indicate that automobile manufacturers like Volvo and Subaru have detection systems that are more effective than comparable systems in other vehicle brands. Additionally, features that limit the speed at which a vehicle can travel could be more effective at preventing fatal pedestrian accidents than pedestrian detection devices.

Unfortunately, not all manufacturers offer these safety devices, and even in vehicles that have them, drivers may drive more recklessly because they count on the safety technology to keep them safe. Because these features do not have a perfect protection rate, serious accidents still occur. If you have suffered serious injuries or lost a loved one in a pedestrian or bicycle accident, you may have reason to file a personal injury or wrongful death claim against the driver considered at fault in order to seek compensation for allowable damages. 

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