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Will advanced technology ever eliminate pedestrian accidents?

Safety authorities have expressed concern about the nationwide pedestrian crisis, including Springfield and other Illinois cities. You might not be aware of the urgency by which automotive suppliers and manufacturers are tackling development projects to avert pedestrian accidents. There were great strides in the development of technologies to prevent crashes, and exciting plans exist that will focus on pedestrian safety.

Most new cars now come with crash-avoidance systems, safer infotainment systems, lane-departure warnings and even driverless cars -- all to protect occupants of the vehicles. Finally, some industrial manufacturers now focus on pedestrian safety.

Systems in development

The following list will give you an idea of how much safer you may be as a pedestrian in the not-too-distant future:

  • Brake systems: Reportedly, almost every single automaker in the U.S. has made a voluntary pledge to ensure that automatic braking systems will be part of the standard technology of all new cars by 2022. Radar and cameras will monitor the areas to the side and in front of the vehicles continuously to detect pedestrians that even the driver cannot see.
  • Wireless communication: Sensors on infrastructure like the tops of poles and the booms over intersections will transmit signals to the vehicles that will alert them of any pedestrians close by, even those who appear ready to jaywalk on corners.
  • Improved headlights: Reportedly, one in four fatal pedestrian accidents happen after dark. For that reason, any improvement in engineering and design that will improve vehicle lighting to allow better visibility ahead will prevent pedestrian accidents.
  • Augmented reality systems: Distractions that take drivers' eyes off the road to infotainment systems, GPS devices and more will no longer be a problem when augmented reality systems project GPS arrows and directions, speed and other information onto the windshield. This will eliminate the need to take the eyes off the road to operate touch-screen devices.
  • Driverless vehicles: While fully automated self-driving vehicles have been part of trials and test projects in various cities, you and many others might be skeptical about pedestrian safety around these vehicles after several accidents involving pedestrians. However, in some of these, pedestrians were at fault, and it might take some time before driverless cars can eliminate road deaths.

While you anticipate all these measures that promise to protect you from harm as you walk about Springfield streets, you might be wise to continue practicing the safety precautions on which you have relied up to now. If you fall victim to a negligent driver, you may pursue financial relief. An experienced personal injury attorney can assist with the navigation of the Illinois civil justice system to recover monetary and emotional damages.

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