Driving is a daily routine for many Americans. Whether they are commuting to the office or driving the kids to softball practice, more people are spending time on the road in the U.S. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the number of automobiles on roads in the U.S. increased 2.2 percent in 2016. Unfortunately, along with more cars on the road, the NHTSA also reported 37, 461 deaths from traffic fatalities, which was an increase from the previous year.
Those kinds of numbers might make anyone getting behind the wheel nervous. The good news is automakers are continually improving safety technology on vehicles. Below are five safety features, which might keep you and your family safer on the road.
Adaptive cruise control
Adaptive cruise control utilizes sensors, radars and/or cameras to monitor the car ahead of you. The monitoring helps keep your car a safe distance behind the car in front of you. It will slow the car if you get too close. If a collision is imminent, some systems even stop the car completely and tighten seatbelts.
Blind spot detection
With blind spot detection, a warning light flashes on your car's mirrors, if a car is coming up behind that you might have missed. Some systems also warn you if you put on a turn signal, and there is car right next to you in that lane.
Lane departure/lane keep warning
Maybe you are driving at night and you feel at little sleepy. Or maybe you turn around to check on your kids in the backseat. Either scenario could have you swerving out of your lane. Lane departure warning either sounds a warning, buzzes your seat or creates a visible warning sign that you have crossed out of your lane. A lane keep system will guide your car back, if you have crossed into another traffic lane.
A backup camera uses wide-angle lenses to give drivers up to 180-degree views around their cars. The cameras turn on when you begin reversing and help prevent you from missing things behind and beside your vehicle.
Automatic Emergency Braking
Automatic emergency braking helps you react quicker to prevent collisions. Cars with automatic emergency braking apply the brakes, if you have not reacted to a potential accident. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety reports that automatic braking systems reduce the rate of rear-end collisions by about 40 percent.
Spending time on the road does not have to be a source of anxiety. Investing in vehicle safety features may help protect you and your family while you are behind the wheel.