Pay attention to the road? But I have candy to crush!
How many times have you looked away from your phone's screen just in time to prevent crashing into someone — but ended up losing that round of Fruit Ninja in the process? Too many times, that's how many. But this heartache will be a distant memory soon, thanks to the hardworking folks in the auto industry.
According to Reuters, the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced that in Sept, a deal in principle with 10 automakers will eventually add the technology to prevent thousands of crashes a year.
The final agreement includes automakers that represent more than 99 percent of U.S. light vehicle sales. Among those joining are Toyota, GM, Ford, Fiat Chrysler, Honda and Volkswagen.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, a group that helped reach the voluntary agreement with automakers, has said as many as 20 percent of crashes could be prevented by this fancy new technology.
"Do the math. That’s 5 million crashes every year — 20 percent reduction means 1 million less. Those are big numbers," a spokesperson said.
The National Transportation Safety Board and Consumer Reports have both called for making the technology mandatory in all vehicles.
In 2012, rear-end crashes killed 1,705 Americans and injured 547,000 in the United States. About 87 percent of those deaths and injuries might have been prevented or lessened if vehicles had a collision avoidance system — because they were linked to driver inattention, researchers found.
In meantime, you can check out Google's driveless car — but it did just crash into someone. Maybe it was sending Farmville invites?