IIHS Says Rearview Cameras Alone More Effective than Cameras/Sensors Combined
March 18, 2014 10:06 AM
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Cameras alone are more effective than cameras and parking sensors says survey
Rear view cameras are becoming a standard accessory on many cars sold in the U.S. The cameras have been mandated to prevent accidents where
small children are backed over by inattentive drivers
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has performed a study -- using volunteers driving 21 different vehicles in an empty parking lot -- that found backup cameras are much more effective than parking sensors while travelling in reverse.
The results of the study show that cameras would better prevent “backover” crashes into pedestrians who are in the vehicle blind spot than parking sensors alone. Oddly, the study found that while cameras worked better than sensors alone, the camera alone worked better than a combination of sensors and camera.
"Right now cameras appear to be the most promising technology for addressing this particularly tragic type of crash, which frequently claims the lives of young children in the driveways of their own homes," says David Zuby, the Institute's executive vice president and chief research officer.
During testing, researchers used a pole that had bands painted to represent children of different heights. Bands were market for the average height of children 12-15 months old, 2.5-3 years old, and 5-6 years old.
The study found that on average if the child was within about 27-feet of the back bumper, drivers couldn't see them using mirrors and looking around alone. Not surprisingly, large SUVs performed the worst in visibility, while small cars typically performed the best.
An estimated 292 people die each year and 18,000 are injured by drivers that back into them. Backup cameras reduce the rear blind zone by 90% on average according to the study.
Current legislation that would mandate the installation of backup cameras on all new passenger vehicles sold in the U.S.
has been delayed
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RE: Surprised at the results
3/18/2014 3:13:15 PM
If you click through to read the source article (from the IIHS, not some reporter munging what they're told), it looks like a pretty robust test setup. For this particular test, told the test subjects to evaluate the car's entertainment system, then to move the car to a different parking spot. Then they snuck in a child-sized foam dummy behind the car (pic in the article). Some of the dummies were stationary, some moved.
There are more interesting tidbits if you read the source article. Most surprising was that even with the camera, nearly half (44%) of the drivers hit the stationary dummy. Inattentiveness seems to be the biggest killer here.
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