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Advances in motor vehicle technology have saved countless lives over the last several decades.  Seatbelts, airbags, and anti-lock brakes are perhaps the most well known and obvious safety features and are available in nearly every car on the road today.  Newer technologies, however, operate in more subtle ways to keep drivers and pedestrians safe.

A recent article in the Lansing State Journal described some of these new technologies reviewed in a study released by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.  The Institute reviewed five distinct safety systems, including collision warning systems and lane departure alerts.

According to the Institute, about 40% of all crashes in the U.S. involve a frontal impact.  A collision warning system notifies the driver by flashing lights, sounding alarms, and tightening seatbelts.  A similar technology – adaptive cruise control – operates by keeping a safe distance between a car and the vehicle in front of it.  “Sideswipe” collisions may be reduced by lane departure alerts.  These systems warn a driver when he or she appears to be leaving his or her lane unintentionally.

There are dozens, if not hundreds, of new technologies designed to keep drivers safe in the event of an automobile accident.  Unfortunately, there is no such thing as a “safe” car crash.  The best way to avoid danger on the roadway is to remain alert and help prevent a collision in the first place.

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