Technological Developments Designed to Reduce the Number of Intersection Accidents


July 30, 2012

Two people were killed in Oconee County, Georgia when the driver of an SUV ran the light at an intersection and struck their car. Drivers running stop signs and red lights on our roadways kill thousands of people every year.

According to Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS), the concern over dangers of intersection collisions has grown based on some relevant statistical data including:

  • 9,500 fatalities occurred in a recent year due to intersection accidents
  • 1,300,000 injuries occurred
  • 2,600,000 crashes total were recorded
  • The cost of these intersection accidents to society was upwards of $100 billion

There are a number of reasons why so many car accidents occur at intersections. Distracted drivers cause many intersection collisions. Drivers that are under the influence of drugs or alcohol are another culprit. Other reasons for intersection accidents include aggressive driving, inexperienced driving, elderly driving, limited sight lines at intersections and bad weather.

Advanced Intelligent Countermeasures

Studies are being conducted regarding the development of countermeasures that can help prevent collisions at intersections. Intersection Crash Avoidance Violation (ICAV) systems actually sound an alarm in the car when a driver is about to disregard a stop sign, red light or other type of intersection warning. There are also other systems called Cooperative Intersection Collision Avoidance Systems (CICAS) that use both vehicle based and infrastructure based technologies to help drivers that are approaching an intersection develop a clear picture of what is happening in the intersection. These systems will actually be able to help drivers to maneuver through cross traffic and to warn them if they are not going to be able to "make" the light while going their current speed.

Ford Motor Company has been working with the Vehicle Safety Communications Two Consortium (VSC-2) to develop safety applications that allow vehicles to "talk" to each other and to the roadway traffic controls. This group will evaluate the CICAS system to see how it rates. The CICAS system works as follows:

As a vehicle approaches a traffic light, the vehicle receives a message from the traffic light with the signal phase (red, yellow or green) and the amount of time until the signal changes. The vehicle would use the information together with the vehicle position and speed to evaluate if a warning or some other safety countermeasure is appropriate.

It is difficult to say at this time whether or not cars that are able to talk to one another or communicate with the intersection equipment will be able to change a driver's behavior. The fact that a driver is a human being fallible to distraction, recklessness and negligence is not something that technology is going to be able to remove from the equation. It will be interesting to watch the degree that technological advances can mitigate the negligent or reckless conduct of Georgia drivers.

If you or someone you love has been injured in an accident due to the negligence of another driver at an intersection, we invite you to contact our personal injury attorneys at our office in Georgia. Our experienced Georgia auto accident attorneys are available to assist clients throughout all of Georgia and the Southeast, 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. No matter where you are located we are just a phone call away, and we will even come to you. Call us 24 hours a day/7 days a week for your Free Consultation at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333). You can also visit our main personal injury law website at www.montlick.com and use our Free Case Evaluation Form or 24-hour Live Online Chat.

Category: Auto Accidents

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