Honda is researching ways to help its cars avoid accidents with other vehicles, pedestrians and motorcyclists. As the Detroit Free Press reported, Honda’s experimental technology involves embedded computer chips in motor vehicles, motorcycles and cellphones that determine whether they are in danger of colliding.
If the technology anticipates a crash, warnings appear on the vehicles’ screens or phone. If a driver ignores the alert, the vehicle is programmed to stop. That means the technology automatically attempts to prevent an accident even if a driver takes no action.
Honda demonstrated some of the experimental crash avoidance technology recently as part of the ongoing Connected Vehicle Safety Pilot program. It’s a research initiative overseen by the U.S. Department of Transportation to determine the costs and benefits of connected car technologies.
Honda’s vehicle-to-pedestrian program enables a car to pick up a signal from a pedestrian’s cellphone at an intersection. A screen in the car shows a picture of the pedestrian. If the pedestrian continues to move into the car’s path, the screen advises the driver to brake. But if the driver ignores the warnings, the car will brake on its own.
The system is similar when it comes to potential motorcycle collisions. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, vehicles that are connected and communicate with each other as well as anticipate work zones and traffic lights hold promise for significantly reducing crashes.
Honda hopes to have this technology in place by the end of the decade.
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