Print 68 comment(s) - last by hifloor.. on Nov 22 at 3:50 AM

Stupid is as stupid does...

A large number of deaths are attributed each year to distracted driving in the United States. Many drivers are too busy texting, making phone calls, or reading (among other things) while driving their cars. If you listen to some people in Washington, the answer to fixing such driving stupidity are even more safety mandates.

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) wants collision-avoidance technology such as forward-collision and lane-departure warning systems, adaptive cruise control, and automatic braking on every car sold in the U.S. These technologies are already available as options on many luxury cars currently on the market.

The problem on the consumer end of things is that these safety features are included in options packages that add $1,000 or more to the price of the vehicle. Automotive manufacturers oppose the NTSB because the added costs would spread to even the most basic automobiles on the market instead of being relegated to more expensive vehicles where buyers are more willing to fork over the money.
However, the NTSB believes that this sort of technology can help drivers improve reaction times and avoid crashes.

According to the NHTSA, systems such as the ones it's recommending would make a significant impact on reducing the number of accidents caused by distracted drivers. Accidents caused by distracted drivers account for 60% of highway fatalities.

"We have a chance to take a big bite into that figure," NTSB board member Robert Sumwalt said.

Source: Detroit News

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The Real Problem
By mgilbert on 11/15/2012 1:07:15 PM , Rating: 2
All these systems are designed to combat the same thing - careless driving. Cops only care about revenue, so they run speed traps, and ignore everything else.

If you don't signal every lane change, turn, merge, and exit... If you drive with only your parking lights on... If you follow too closely... If you don't have your headlights on at dusk, dawn, and in the rain... If you creep into the crosswalk while waiting on red lights... If you don't keep right except to pass... If you don't come to a complete stop before turning right on red... Then you are a careless driver, and I want you off the road. Until cops turn off their radars, and put there holier-than-thou arrogance in their back pockets, and start going after careless drivers, 100 people a die are going to continue to die in car accidents.

RE: The Real Problem
By BioHazardous on 11/15/2012 2:12:15 PM , Rating: 2
Cops only care about revenue, so they run speed traps, and ignore everything else.
I've actually gone down to the police station to complain about people who can't be inconvenienced to stop at a red light during rush hour and just blow through when it's red long before they enter the intersection.. That and other stuff like not yielding to pedestrians in the crosswalks like they're supposed to, signaling, etc.

The response repeatedly has been; that stuff is too difficult to prove in court so they don't waste time on it. All they need is reasonable doubt. So the light was green from my direction, that doesn't mean 100% that it was red from their direction, and how do I prove that in court.. Which only goes to further prove that cops only care about generating revenue when doing traffic patrol stuff.

I'm pretty sure if they started pulling people over, and giving tickets for all these other things that actually cause accidents, people would start driving differently. Sure you won't change everybody, but a lot of people would change, at least for a while.

RE: The Real Problem
By Rukkian on 11/16/2012 11:44:52 AM , Rating: 2
I agree that those things should be ticketed, but it is tough, and police budgets are already slim, so adding a bunch more officers to monitor for these and spend their time in court is expensive.

Another issue (that I have noticed) is that since tickets are much more punitive to those with lower income, I think tickets should be based off the value of your car. If you drive a 100k automobile, you should be fined accordingly. I see so many expensive cars driving like a-holes just because they don't care about a $50 ticket. Start giving them $5k tickets and they might start caring.

I also think that speed / red light cameras are a good way to help with this to keep the cops from needing to do this. Ramp them up, start putting them everywhere. The problem is they get fought by the very people that would get tagged all the time, and then dumped.

"Well, there may be a reason why they call them 'Mac' trucks! Windows machines will not be trucks." -- Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer
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