ITASCA, Ill. and IOWA CITY, Iowa, March 17, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- MyCarDoesWhat, a vehicle education safety initiative from the National Safety Council and the University of Iowa, applauds the U.S. Department of Transportation and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) on today's announcement that 20 automakers have committed to making automatic emergency braking (AEB) a standard feature on new cars by 2022.
An estimated 38,300 people died on U.S. roads last year, an 8 percent increase from 2014 and the largest year-over-year percent increase in 50 years. The move to make AEB standard in virtually all vehicles will prevent hundreds of thousands of crashes and save lives.
"More than 100 deaths a day on our roadways is unacceptable," said Deborah A.P. Hersman, president and CEO of the National Safety Council. "Today, regulators and industry produced a new solution to an old problem – 2022 cannot come soon enough."
Automatic emergency braking applies the brakes in an imminent emergency – to help prevent a crash into the vehicle ahead. When the system's vehicle sensors detect that a collision is imminent, the technology will automatically apply moderate to hard braking. IIHS found that automatic braking can significantly reduce damage to a vehicle in a rear-end crash.
"Technology has made today's vehicles safer than ever – technology like automatic emergency braking that can help prevent crashes altogether," said Daniel McGehee, director of the Transportation and Vehicle Safety Program at the University of Iowa. "Unfortunately, our research reveals a majority of drivers are uncertain about how new safety technologies work. As technologies enter into the market and become standard, it's imperative we educate drivers about them and how to use them effectively."
The National Safety Council and the University of Iowa Public Policy Center partnered earlier this year to launch MyCarDoesWhat to educate the public on how to best interact with vehicle safety features to have better, safer driving experiences.
The campaign's website, MyCarDoesWhat.org, includes educational videos and other information about a variety of safety technologies including back-up cameras, blind spot monitoring systems, forward collision warning and other collision avoidance systems that help drivers.
About the National Safety Council
Founded in 1913 and chartered by Congress, the National Safety Council, nsc.org, is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to save lives by preventing injuries and deaths at work, in homes and communities, and on the road through leadership, research, education and advocacy. NSC advances this mission by partnering with businesses, government agencies, elected officials and the public in areas where we can make the most impact – distracted driving, teen driving, workplace safety, prescription drug overdoses and Safe Communities.
About the University of Iowa
The Transportation & Vehicle Safety Research Program at the University of Iowa works to improve technology design through a better understanding of how drivers perform and behave in crash situations. Their research-driven program works at the intersection of safety technology and public policy. The program's areas of research include: human factors and human behavior, advanced in-vehicle safety technologies, driver distraction, teen driving, crash analysis and automated vehicle policy.