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NTSB recommends mandatory collision avoidance systems

Arkansas drivers may be interested to learn that the National Transportation Safety Board may be in conflict with the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers over making collision avoidance systems mandatory on passenger and commercial vehicles. The NTSB has said that making the systems standard on all new models could save lives and prevent thousands of injuries annually. In the past, however, the industry trade group has stated that consumers should have the choice to purchase a vehicle with such a system.

However, few vehicles come with such systems. The NTSB is arguing that just as people do not have to pay extra to have seat belts in their cars, they should not have to pay for collision avoidance systems. It is estimated that more than four out of five rear-end collisions would be less severe with an avoidance system installed. Approximately half a million people are injured and 1,700 are killed in rear-end crashes each year, according to the federal agency.

Collision avoidance systems work by alerting a driver to an oncoming crash or that the car has crossed into another lane and can help with braking or with stability. The NTSB has been working to get the systems installed as standard on cars for several years without success.

Many car collisions are caused by a driver who was speeding, distracted by a cellphone or negligent in some other manner. In many cases, those who are injured are forced to incur significant medical expenses, and they often suffer a further financial burden as a result of being unable to work. An injured victim may wish to consult with an attorney to determine whether a civil legal action for damages should be filed against the responsible driver.

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