Updated 04:42 PM EST, Thu, Dec 02, 2021

New 'Car Talk' Technology Could Prevent 500,000 Accidents Each Year

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The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is creating a new technology that would permit passenger vehicles to communicate with each other with the aim of preventing left-turn and intersection accidents across the nation. The NHTSA claims that at least half of a million accidents and accident-related deaths could be avoided every year if the new tech is deployed on a large scale. 

According to Value Walk, the government is looking to make this "car talk" tech mandatory for every driver. 

"This technology could move us from helping people survive crashes to helping them avoid crashes altogether - saving lives, saving money and even saving fuel thanks to the widespread benefits it offers," declared Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. 

The idea behind this technology is nothing new, in fact, auto manufactures have been installing collision detection systems for a while now--albiet, they are usually reserved for premium vehicles. The idea behind 'car talk' is an improvement on existing systems because through communicating with every car within 300 yards, a vehicle can react to potential collisions way before they might occur. Traditional systems can only react to the car(s) and situations immediately in front of them. 

Some examples of how the system could help people avoid collisions would be if a car ran a red light, drivers waiting for a green light could then be notified to wait a few moments when their light turns green before driving into the intersection. The system could also warn drivers in the immediate vicinity of an accidient immediately after it occurs, which could avoid further accidents and also allow drivers to exit the freeway and avoid a possible traffic jam. 

The NHTSA's new system isn't without it's potential problems, however. Imagine that a driver in our first example above who is waiting for a green light and doesn't listen to the warning to wait issued by his Car Talk system and is in an accident, who would then be to blame? It's not out of the question to imagine a lawyer making the case that the driver who ignored the warning was more at fault than the person who hypothetically ran the red light. 

Another issue is automation. Value Walk reports that the NHTSA's system architecture hints at automobiles being almost completely automated in the future, though that would be far down the line. But given that self-driving cars are almost upon us, should a federal mandate be given out for Car Talk to be installed in every passenger car in America, it would seem that the era of self-driving cars might be closer than we think.

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