auto avoiding a rear-end collision thanks to collision avoidance sensors

When it comes to the open road, it is critical to place safety first. All drivers need to make sure that they keep their focus on the road at all times. On the other hand, mistakes happen. Therefore, many drivers are investing in powerful safety tools that reduce the chances of them being involved in a motor vehicle accident. This is where collision-avoidance systems, often shortened to CAS, are useful. At the same time, anyone who believes that collision-avoidance systems are a replacement for drivers paying attention to their surroundings is sorely mistaken.

What Are Collision Avoidance Systems?

There are numerous examples of collision-avoidance systems. Some of the most common examples of collision-avoidance systems include:

  • Lane departure assist warning systems
  • Forward collision warning systems,
  • Active and automatic braking systems,
  • Blind-spot monitoring collision-avoidance systems, and
  • Rearview cameras.

In many respects, collision-avoidance systems represent augmented reality infiltrating the auto industry, such as the ability to distinguish pedestrians from vehicles. There are some tools that have even expanded to autonomous speed controls that allow vehicles to stop without input from the driver.

On the other hand, some industry experts have tested CAS tools and found that performance decreases with visibility. That means they may not work properly if fog sets in, if the snow blows, or if the glare becomes too much. Furthermore, some people fear that collision-avoidance systems will be used as a replacement for driver input. Therefore, it is important to take a closer look at how CAS works.

How Do Collision Avoidance Systems Work?

The vast majority of these systems use cameras that are located on both sides of the car. CAS cameras play a role in lane departure warnings and collision avoidance. These cameras continually scan the roads, looking for painted lines and marker lines. Therefore, if the road is covered in snow or if the lines have become worn down over time, this could impact the efficacy of collision-avoidance systems. Furthermore, most cars do not warn the driver if the collision-avoidance system in the car is offline or if the tool cannot read the lane markers on the road.

Watch this video to see how collision avoidance systems work on the road.

When it comes to blind-spot monitoring (BSM), CAS tends to work using radar technology. There is a small radar signal receiver and transmitter that is located on the sides of the vehicle. Usually, it is located in the rear fender. While these tools are reliable, the utility of the radar lens cab impacted if the lens itself gets wet.

What Is the Role of Automatic Braking?

For those who have an automatic braking system in the car, this usually uses a radar unit that is mounted behind the front grille. Car manufacturers do their best to protect collision avoidance units against weather, road debris, and other substances that might interfere with the effectiveness of the collision-avoidance system.

Even though automatic braking systems are reliable, they are not going to work 100 percent of the time. If the radar lens gets covered by debris, it may no longer register a signal. For example, the Subaru EyeSight system is prone to getting knocked offline due to sun glare. Therefore, in situations where the radar lens is dirty, this automatic braking system may not function as well. Additionally, many collision-avoidance systems only use automatic braking for impending collisions in front of the vehicle, not to the sides or rear.

What Should Drivers Know About Collision Avoidance Systems?

Collision-avoidance systems are helpful, but drivers should not place 100% confidence in them. Instead, drivers should:

  • Look at collision-avoidance systems as a safety net, not as the primary cool for motor vehicle collision avoidance.
  • Make sure they pay attention to the road and avoid distracted driving.
  • Understand that collision-avoidance systems cannot avoid 100 percent of potential accidents.

Therefore, while collision-avoidance systems are helpful, nobody should place total faith in this technology to keep them safe in the car. Instead, they should use their own skills and place safety first.

Do Not Blindly Trust a Collision Avoidance System

It is true that collision-avoidance systems can reduce the chances of someone being involved in a motor vehicle accident, yet they are not intended to replace the awareness of the driver. Instead, drivers should look at a collision-avoidance system as a backup for their own skills. It is still important for drivers to keep their hands on the wheel, their eyes on the road, and their phones turned off when they drive. Every driver should place safety as the top priority and this means taking every measure possible to prevent a motor vehicle accident from taking place.

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