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AAA Finds Pedestrian Detection Systems Don’t Work

December 18, 2019

By van der Veen, Hartshorn, Levin & Lindheim

Manufacturers are making their vehicles a little safer every day. With blind spot detection systems, rear-view cameras, and more, safety features have certainly come a long way from air bags and seat belts. Now though, AAA has conducted a study that has found troubling statistics on the pedestrian detection systems found in cars. In their report, the automotive agency has warned motorists not to rely on these pedestrian detection systems too heavily, as they fail more often than they work.

AAA’s Test

In AAA’s study, the agency tested pedestrian detection systems in the Chevrolet Malibu, the Honda Accord, the Toyota Camry, and the Tesla Model 3. All vehicles were 2019 models. A few of the tests conducted by AAA included:

  • Adult pedestrians crossed in front of vehicles during the day. The vehicles were traveling at 20 miles per hour and 30 miles per hour.
  • Adult pedestrians crossed in front of the vehicles at night. The vehicles were traveling at 25 miles per hour.
  • A child darted out in front of the vehicles while the cars were traveling at 20 miles per hour and 30 miles per hour.
  • An adult crossed the street to the right of the car while the vehicle was making a right turn.
  • Two adults stood on the side of the road with their backs to traffic. The vehicles were traveling at 20 miles per hour and 30 miles per hour.

All tests were performed on a closed course and used simulated pedestrian targets to keep everyone involved safe.

The Results

After conducting the tests, AAA found that pedestrian detection systems are essentially completely ineffective at night. Although these systems were more effective during the day, the tests still found that the technology only avoided a crash approximately 40 percent of the time.

During the tests that studied the effectiveness of pedestrian detection systems when children ran out in front of a vehicle, the systems almost never worked. In fact, they failed 90 percent of the time.

Safety Tips for Drivers

Given that pedestrian detection systems are so ineffective, it’s important that drivers do not become reliant on them and that they practice several safety tips while on the roads. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recommends following these tips:

  • Always watch for pedestrians.
  • Use extra care in poor visibility conditions, such as in severe weather or at night.
  • Always use your headlights so pedestrians can see you.
  • Abide by the speed limit at all times.
  • When in residential areas and other places pedestrians could appear suddenly, always lower your speed.
  • Always obey all traffic signs and signals.
  • Take extra care when backing up, as pedestrians could cross into your path.

Using these tips any time you’re behind the wheel will keep everyone safe, and protect you from liability.

Were You Hurt as a Pedestrian? Call Our Pennsylvania Personal Injury Lawyers

The pedestrian detection systems manufacturers are equipping vehicles with today may actually be causing more harm than good to those that are out for a stroll. They are ineffective and when drivers rely too heavily on them, pedestrians become hurt. If you’ve been injured as a pedestrian, you have rights and our Allentown personal injury lawyers at van der Veen, Hartshorn, Levin & Lindheim, will ensure they are upheld. Call us today at (215) 486-0123 to schedule your free consultation and to learn how we can help you claim the full amount of compensation you deserve.



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