Let’s face it! Driving a vehicle is one of the best sensations in the world, but it can also be pretty dangerous. Lucky for us, carmakers have developed safety features to help protect us in the event of a car accident.
In this post we will explore what are 5 safety features in a car that you should be on the lookout for when shopping for a new vehicle. Simply put, a safety feature in a car is a product designed to increase the vehicle’s safety.
These safety features can be found either on the exterior or the interior of the vehicle. Furthermore, their objectives are to help drivers either avoid collisions or keep them as safe as possible during an impact.
The first car with a safety feature was the Ford Model T, which was first introduced over a century ago, around 1908. This was the first automobile with standard safety glass that included a lamination that helps to break the glass into tiny pieces if it breaks, making it safer.
Newer vehicles nowadays come equipped with advanced systems that can even assist the driver in making better decisions behind the steering wheel.
Top 5 Car Safety Features On Newer Cars
Inattentive driving has become more popular over time due to the intense use of mobile devices. No matter how many safety features a vehicle has, the driver needs to do their part to avoid accidents.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), human error is responsible for over 94% of all car accidents. Here are some of the safety features that car companies have developed to help drivers with this issue:
#1 Blind-Spot Monitoring System
A blind spot detection system uses sensors to monitor the areas around your vehicle that are not visible in your mirrors. If another vehicle enters your blind spot, the system will alert you with a visual or audible warning.
Blind spot monitoring systems now play a crucial role when it comes to changing lanes. You won’t have to depend simply on the rear view or side mirrors to check if the coast is clear before you change lanes.
#2 Forward Collision Warning
Forward collision warning works as an inattentive driving monitor assistant. New cars now come equipped with this safety feature, and it is by far one of the best technologies designed to prevent or avoid collisions.
Getting an FCW-equipped vehicle is definitely a step in the right direction if you’re looking for better safety on the road. The system uses sensors to scan the area in front of your car for potential threats.
If it detects a possible collision, it will alert the driver with audio or visual cues or even brake the car automatically for you. Most of the time it typically alerts the driver in case they are falling asleep due to fatigue.
#3 Antilock Brake System
Antilock brakes are one of the most significant safety features in a car. This system prevents the wheels from locking up when the sudden driver brake hard, helping them to maintain control of the vehicle.
ABS was first introduced in the late ’70s and has become a standard feature on all new vehicles nowadays. It’s an excellent choice, particularly when driving in wet or slippery conditions.
#4 Electronic Stability Control System (ESC)
Traction control systems are typically paired with an ESC system and the antilock brakes in newer cars. While traction control limits the power sent to the wheels to prevent them from spinning, ESC takes things one step further by constantly monitoring the car’s direction.
#5 Lane Departure Warning System
Lane centering assist is a feature that uses sensors to read the lane markings on the road and keep your car in the center of your lane.
If the car begins to be near or out of the driver’s line, the lane tracing assist will automatically adjust the steering and provide gentle corrective input to keep you in the lane.
Lane-keeping assist is basically a more advanced form of blind spot monitoring. This safety technology can detect sideways motion, and if the turn signal is not activated, it will provide a warning to the driver.
Other Important Safety Features In Most Cars
The IIHS vehicle safety ratings are one of the best ways to see how safe a vehicle is before you buy it. You can basically review the crash performance of any model that interests you and see how it would perform in different types of accidents.
Although the following vehicle safety features are considered standard equipment, they are super important and worth mentioning. Most of these features have become mandatory in the United States and many other countries as well. Here are other systems:
Adaptive Cruise Control
Cruise control on cars has been around for a long time. This feature allows drivers to maintain a consistent speed without keeping their foot on the gas pedal.
The adaptive cruise control version now automatically adjusts the speed of cars to keep a safe distance from the vehicle in front. This is an excellent feature that can help avoid accidents on highways or long road trips.
Night Vision Pedestrian Detection
Pedestrian detection is a system that uses infrared light to detect pedestrians or animals in low-light conditions. If the system detects a pedestrian, it will alert the driver.
Adaptive headlights are responsible for improving visibility and making it simpler for the driver to see other oncoming drivers or other objects on the road.
These headlights will swivel as the car turns to provide better illumination around corners. Most luxury cars will have these adaptive headlights as standard equipment.
New cars now come equipped with amazing backup camera systems that give you a clear view of what is behind your car as you are backing up.
Some systems will even provide lines on the screen so you can park the vehicle accurately. This feature is a must for those light trucks with that huge blind spot when you back up.
A seat belt is one of the most important safety features because it secures drivers against harmful movements during a collision. According to CDC.gov, seatbelts have been shown to reduce the risk of death by 45%.
Front seat drivers and passengers must wear their shoulder belt at all times. In some states, there are laws that require all occupants of a vehicle to wear seat belts, regardless if they are sitting in the passenger or driver’s seat.
Besides the traditional front airbags, there are also a few additional airbags that come included in most vehicles which are: side curtain airbags, knee airbags, and inflatable seat belts.
All of these were developed to protect drivers and passengers in the event of an accident. Additional airbags are one of the things I value the most regarding car safety features.
Tips To Be Safe Behind The Steering Wheel
Adding a special recording camera to the car will give some evidence to the authorities, which otherwise would be unavailable. These aftermarket cameras will give you some extra protection against uninsured drivers.
Here are a few other tips that can help you stay safe behind the steering wheel:
- Always keep your right foot close to the pedal so you can brake quickly if the automatic emergency braking system issues a warning.
- Take a coffee break if the lane departure warning goes off for a while. It’s better to be safe than sorry.
- Always use the turn signal, even if no one is around.
- Keep your eyes on the road and avoid distractions.
- Leave the electronic stability control feature on at all times.
What is the most important safety feature of a car?
Automatic emergency braking is by far one of the most important safety features that every new car should have. It helps to mitigate a potential collision with another vehicle in case the driver does not have enough time to react.
These forward collision warnings are useful in drawing the driver’s attention to the road ahead. If the driver does not brake in time, the car will automatically brake for them. It is by far the best safety technology that has been developed in vehicles to help avoid accidents and has the potential to save lives.