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Do Pedestrian Detection Systems Reduce the Risk of Pedestrian Accidents?

US automakers are always conducting research and developing advanced safety technology to prevent motor vehicle accidents, and some of their efforts are even dedicated to protecting individuals on foot. Pedestrian detection systems are one such innovation designed to reduce the frequency of pedestrian accidents. The initiative is a welcome one, as AAA statistics indicate that around 6,000 people are killed while walking every year. Plus, an additional 137,000 individuals were treated in hospital emergency departments for pedestrian accidents in 2017.

Still, no advanced safety equipment can entirely prevent accidents, so people on foot are still at risk. You might be relieved to know that you have remedies as a victim, and a pedestrian accident lawyer can explain them in more detail. It may also be helpful to learn about how pedestrian detection systems work and areas where they could use some improvement.

Overview of Pedestrian Detection Systems

Without getting into the specific technology, these solutions encompass some of the features already developed by auto manufacturers to detect and react to other vehicles. Dynamic brake systems and collision-imminent braking systems have shown great promise in reducing car accidents, so it is a logical step that they could also respond to the presence of pedestrians.

Current pedestrian detections systems function through sensors and cameras to detect the threat of an impact with a person on foot. The technology will then alert the motorist and/or implement a series of actions to avoid a pedestrian accident, with particular emphasis on braking.

System Performance in Test Scenarios

Pedestrian detection systems are still in their infancy in terms of development, and there have been disturbing findings when tested by automaker watchdog groups. AAA researchers found that these solutions do not meet their intended objectives in test environments and real-life pedestrian accidents. One key finding is that pedestrian detection systems were ineffective in sensing the presence of a person walking in low light conditions, an extreme concern considering that three-quarters of fatal pedestrian accidents happen at night.

Additional findings regarding pedestrian detection systems include:

  • These solutions performed best when the vehicle is traveling at 20 mph and an adult walked directly in front. The systems decreased the number of accidents by 40%, but only in this specific test environment.
  • At a speed of 30 mph or higher, the majority of systems did not prevent pedestrian collision.
  • When a child dashed at the broadside of a vehicle going 20 mph, the technology worked just 11% of the time.
  • For a test involving a motorist making a right turn, pedestrian detection systems had a 100% failure rate.
Consult With a Pedestrian Accident Attorney About Your Rights

If you were hurt in a traffic-related crash while walking, you may qualify to recover compensation for your losses, including medical costs, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more. You are in a better position to obtain the monetary damages you deserve when you have experienced legal counsel on your side, so contact a pedestrian accident lawyer right away to discuss your options.

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