Auto accidents are all too common on the highways and streets, but thankfully, they have been on a steady decline for decades. This is partly thanks to new technology. More precisely, this is thanks to safety technology in vehicles becoming more widely available over time.
First utilized in high priced luxury cars in the late eighties, stability control is one of the greatest technological developments dealing with vehicle safety of the last few decades. In a recent report the National Highway Traffic Safety Association (NHTSA) said the technology, also known as anti-rollover, can reduce the risk of fatal motor vehicle accidents by a good eighteen percent.
As of 2009, the technology was installed in some fifty or so percent of trucks and about eighty percent of passenger cars. And soon, both those numbers should rise to one hundred, as anti-rollover will be mandatory in all new cars by 2012.
So, what exactly does stability control do, and how does it do it? Anti-rollover technology works as a sort of an auto-adjustment feature that monitors various factors to predict and prevent loss of vehicle control. The technology takes into account information such as speed, weight distribution, inertia, driving patterns, traction and so on, and uses all of these to calculate certain adjustments, applying a varying degree of braking force to one or several wheels of the car.
In short, it helps to provide a safer, smoother ride. A majority of the time the driver won’t even have any idea that their driving is being adjusted by the computer as a safety precaution. Of course the biggest benefits of anti-rollover technology are the lives it saves by preventing fatal accidents on the nation’s roadways.
Source: Detroit News, NHTSA: Anti-rollover technology reduces fatal crashes 18 percent, David Shepardson, 8 August 2011