Roadway deaths seem to be entirely preventable. Unless as car has completely gone out of control on its own, the owner of a vehicle is completely responsible for what that car does when driven. The same goes for pedestrians as the cross into roadways and the responsibility to observe and be aware of their surroundings. The fact that more of us are driving distracted than ever before and the fact that nearly 38,300 people died in car accidents last year while nearly 4.4 million were injured enough to require medical attention means that 2015 was the deadliest year since 2008.
While some of these deaths are attributed to the lower gas prices and increase in unemployment more of them are caused by distraction than anything else. The gas prices and unemployment simply mean we are driving more often and farther distances, but the distraction is completely our own fault. By staying alert to the task at hand, driving, you can help to avoid accidents on any roadway and allow yourself, your loved ones and your vehicle to return home safely. One company is working to help with this and is the leader in providing us with the technology that can assist in our ability to drive and be aware of our surroundings.
This company is Continental and is well-known for their tires, but they actually create many of the components used in the vehicles we drive on a daily basis. Their advancements in technology has led them to work toward a zero death roadway goal and they are currently well on their way with the advanced features they offer us. What they have developed over the past several years includes the adaptive cruise control systems, driver assistance features and rearview camera systems we enjoy on many of our vehicles today.
While Continental does develop nearly every part of the car its these systems that they feel will help them to reach the zero deaths on the roadways goal and help us ensure a safer driving world for all. The roadblocks that are stopping this from becoming a reality thus far are cost and implementation. More car shoppers prefer items that are more tangible to them than the advanced safety features and warning systems of a car. This is why we see nearly eight percent of the vehicles sold last year had aluminum wheels while only about eight percent had adaptive cruise control installed.
Even though the numbers are going up we need to find a way to educate more drivers, especially those who make the decisions for their households, as to the benefits of a full menu of driver assistance features and safety technology. Continental hasn’t put all its eggs into the autonomous driving basket, although they are developing this technology as much as any other company. Their belief is that a car with the right driver assistance features such as adaptive cruise control, a backup camera, blind spot monitoring and automatic emergency braking will be much more likely to help a driver avoid and accident, even if they become distracted for a few seconds on the road. This means we need to embrace this more and auto companies need to bring the prices down to have these features installed so more of us can feel safe on the road in vehicles that help to keep us safe from harm.