The Government May Soon Mandate Technology That Could Prevent A Huge Number Of Car Crashes

Us dot tests v2v technologyUS DOTIf cars can talk to one another, they can help us avoid crashes

The government is moving toward mandating new technology that lets cars talk to one another and could prevent or mitigate up to 80% of car crashes involving non-impaired drivers, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administrationannounced today.

With 30,000 people killed on U.S. roads every year, that could save a lot of lives.

Vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communication technology lets cars exchange information about their speed, direction, and position, 10 times per second.

That makes them far better-equipped than their human drivers to determine if it’s safe to pass on a two-lane road or turn left at an intersection.

A year-long pilot program with 3,000 cars, trucks, and buses in Ann Arbor, Michigan “demonstrates V2V’s viability and value,” the DOT said in a blog post. As tested, the vehicles warn the driver of danger, but do not hit the brakes or control steering.

The NHTSA will soon publish a report analysing the data collected, covering technical feasibility, privacy and security, safety benefits, and cost.

After that, it will “begin working on a regulatory proposal that would require V2V devices in new vehicles in a future year.”

If it goes into effect, this technology will eventually be mandated in all new cars. And one day, we could all live in a world where every car can communicate with its neighbours.

There are benefits to V2V beyond safety. The E.U.-financed Safe Road Trains for the Environment (SARTRE) project uses wireless technology to connect six to eight cars in a convoy, so they act like so many cars of a train. The resulting “road train” keeps vehicles at the same speed, improving fuel efficiency and reducing congestion.

And it’s not a leap to see how V2V moves us a step closer to self-driving cars, once automakers add the ability to actually avoid crashes, not just give humans a heads up.

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.