Chances are your company vehicles use some form of advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS), but do your employees understand the limitations of ADAS? Safety technologies can help reduce the risk of traffic accidents, but as the National Safety Council points out, “even the most advanced safety feature cannot replace a safe, focused driver in the car.”
Although drivers may understand the benefits of having ADAS blind spot monitoring, forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, and lane departure warning in their vehicles, many are unaware of the limits of safety technologies.
Educating your team about what ADAS can and cannot do will not only keep them safe on the road but will also help limit your company’s liability risk.
The Dangers of Overreliance on Safety Technologies
A new report by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety highlights the high percentage of drivers who have a faulty concept of just how much ADAS can do to prevent accidents.
For the report, the Foundation commissioned researchers from the University of Iowa to survey drivers who recently purchased a 2016 or 2017 model-year vehicle with ADAS technologies. Here is a recap of some of the findings, as reported by Forbes:
- Nearly 80 percent of drivers with blind spot monitoring systems were unaware of limitations or believed the systems could accurately monitor the roadway behind the vehicle or reliably detect bicycles, pedestrians, and vehicles passing at high speed. “In reality, the technology can only detect when a vehicle is traveling in a driver’s blind spot and many systems do not reliably detect pedestrians or cyclists,” the report notes.
- Nearly 40 percent of drivers did not know the limitations of forward collision warning and automatic emergency braking systems, or confused the two technologies, incorrectly reporting that forward collision warning could apply the brakes in the case of an emergency. (This technology is designed to deliver a warning signal only.)
- About 25 percent of drivers using blind spot monitoring or rear cross traffic alert systems reported feeling comfortable relying only on the systems and not performing visual checks or looking over their shoulder for oncoming traffic or a pedestrian.
- 33 percent of owners of vehicles with automatic emergency braking systems did not realize that the system relied on cameras or sensors that could be blocked by dirt, ice, or snow.
- Only about 50 percent of the drivers who reported buying their vehicle from a car dealership recalled being offered training on how to use ADAS technology.
A Safety Training Resource: MyCarDoesWhat.org
The National Safety Council has a new campaign that can be used as a safety training resource. MyCarDoesWhat.org uses videos, graphics, animation, and social media to “educate the public on the ever-changing world of car safety features.”
The website provides quick, easy-to-use information “for any driver, no matter what kind of car they have or how old it is.” It allows you to enter the make and model of your car and find out more about its safety features. Here are just a few of the types of questions your team should be able to answer about the vehicles they drive:
- How do I find out what an icon or warning means?
- How do I use these features the way they were intended?
- What features should my car have, and what features will be mandated in the future?
Taking the time to build ADAS education into your safety meetings is a smart investment in your company’s present day