Technology Spotlight: Drowsiness Alert
Drowsy driving is a tremendous problem for car and truck drivers. The National Sleep Foundation, which monitors drowsy driving, estimates that over 100,000 reported accidents involve driver fatigue each year. Further, an astonishing 60 percent of drivers reported having driven a vehicle while feeling drowsy, with approximately a third falling asleep behind the wheel.
Recognizing the severity of the drowsy driving problem, the automotive industry has developed drowsiness alert systems. These cutting edge systems can detect driver drowsiness using a combination of sensor readings, including eye and face monitoring, vehicle position in lane monitoring, and more. The system can issue an alert when it finds you are tired. It will also recommend rest as it feels needed.
At Montlick and Associates, Attorneys at Law, our Atlanta auto accident attorneys have represented thousands of individuals injured in drowsy driving related accidents. We know that these accidents can inflict serious and even lifelong injuries. Moreover, we hope that drowsiness alert systems are effective in preventing drowsy driving and reducing these catastrophic accidents. In this technology spotlight, we offer more information about the innovative drowsiness alert.
How Drowsiness Alert Systems Work
Most drowsiness alert systems use an array of sensors and cameras both inside and outside the vehicle to attempt to determine whether the driver is fatigued. For instance, cameras near the steering wheel can detect drowsiness by tracking eye motions and head bobs. Exterior sensors can detect whether the vehicle is swerving or driving erratically. The drowsiness alert system will then issue some alert to the driver, often an audible alarm, and recommend the driver rest using a graphic on the screen.
The technology is still evolving and cannot be relied on 100% of the time to detect fatigue. Drivers must still pay close attention to their alertness levels and use their discretion in determining whether they need a break. Drowsiness alert can, however, serve as an extra set of eyes in assessing your mental focus.
Adaption of Drowsiness Alert Systems
Several automakers now offer drowsiness alert systems. They vary in their capabilities and automakers are continuing to expand upon the technology. Audi offers a "rest recommendation system" while the BMW system, like many, analyzes driver behavior then recommends a break if needed. Volvo was the first to offer its "driver alert control" system, which will assess whether the vehicle is being driven in a manner indicating fatigue and then issue an audible alert. In coming years, we expect that more cars will incorporate this technology with even greater capabilities.
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Our Atlanta Auto Accident Attorneys at Montlick and Associates, Attorneys at Law, represent injured car accident victims and their families. Our firm has been representing those who suffer serious injuries throughout all of Georgia and in the Southeast for over 35 years, including but not limited to Albany, Athens, Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Gainesville, Macon, Marietta, Rome, Roswell, Savannah, Smyrna, Valdosta, Warner Robins and all smaller cities and rural areas in the state.
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