New Frontal Impact Technology May Reduce Pedestrian Accidents


September 05, 2011

The tragic death of a pedestrian struck by a vehicle in Northwest Atlanta recently is another sad reminder of the potential danger posed to pedestrians by unsafe drivers. The fatal Atlanta pedestrian accident, which is currently under investigation by the Atlanta police department, indicates that the pedestrian was struck by a vehicle traveling by after stepping out into the roadway.

While there has been substantial progress in recent years to protect the safety of pedestrians, the recent tragedy serves as a grim testament to the danger that still faces Georgia pedestrians. While the number of pedestrians that are hurt and killed in collisions involving motor vehicles has steadily declined during the last decade, there are still over 4,000 people killed and another 59,000 injured annually according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

There is hope that emerging technology may reduce the prevalence and seriousness of pedestrian accidents. Some new vehicles are being equipped with frontal collision warning systems, including some that can detect pedestrians in the roadway. Other accident avoidance technologies that may reduce pedestrian accidents include lane departure warning systems, adaptive headlights and side view assist features.

According to a study conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), there were eleven vehicle models equipped with frontal collision warning systems in 2011. The report indicates that 1.2 million crashes could be avoided, including 879 pedestrian crashes, if all vehicles were equipped with frontal collision warning systems. The conclusions of the IIHS report are even more encouraging when it comes to the impact of installing such systems with pedestrian identification technology. The report indicates that such technology could prevent an additional 39,000 crashes including over 2,900 fatal crashes.

There are a number of reasons that this technology could be so effective in preventing accidents and protecting pedestrians. Accidents where a vehicle is traveling straight ahead toward the pedestrian account for over 60 percent of all fatalities in frontal pedestrian collisions. Most pedestrian accidents are not the result of obstructions that impair the visibility of pedestrians. The study found that the majority of pedestrian accidents occur when the pedestrian is crossing the street or driving straight toward the pedestrian. The driver never applies the brakes in many of these collisions.

This suggests a high volume of pedestrian accidents occur because of driver inattention. These early warning systems are an effective way to alert distracted drivers of an impending pedestrian collision. Some of the frontal collision warning systems even apply the vehicle brakes if the driver fails to respond to the warning. While technology may reduce the number of pedestrian accidents in Atlanta and throughout Georgia, many pedestrians continue to suffer catastrophic injury and wrongful death. The experienced Atlanta pedestrian accident lawyers at Montlick and Associates provide caring and dedicated legal representation to those harmed by the negligence of others. Our Georgia pedestrian accident law firm has been representing pedestrian accident victims for almost 30 years.

Our Atlanta pedestrian accident lawyers 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 our attorneys 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 us online at www.montlick.com and use our Free Case Evaluation Form or 24-hour Live Online Chat.

Category: Personal Injury

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