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AAA finds truck safety technologies could prevent crashes

A study by AAA has analyzed the effect of four safety technologies: lane departure warning systems, automatic emergency braking, air disc brakes and video-based onboard safety monitoring systems. These devices are meant to reduce the crash risk of commercial trucks in New York and across the U.S., and their benefits may be more than safety related.

Authors of the study did not conduct original research but rather consulted the best published studies from government departments like the DoT, industry groups like the American Transportation Research Institute and academic journals like the Journal of Safety Research. They also reviewed the truck crash rates between 2010 and 2015 and formed an advisory panel.

Of the four devices, video-based monitoring systems are estimated to prevent 63,000 crashes and 115 deaths each year. In all, 44 to 86 percent of safety-critical events could be prevented. The other three technologies combined can prevent over 14,000 crashes and 500 deaths.

According to a AAA companion survey, one in four adults said that they would feel more comfortable sharing the road with trucks if they knew that these technologies had been incorporated. Authors of the study say that installing these devices can make for a win-win situation. However, the prices of onboard safety monitoring systems range from $300 to $750, which may be too expensive for smaller truck companies.

Truck accidents will remain an issue as well since technology cannot curb human negligence or recklessness. If a distracted, fatigued or speeding trucker injures another driver, that driver could file an injury claim for monetary compensation. An attorney is recommended in such a situation as he or she can assess the claim, estimate a settlement and hire investigators to find proof against the defendant.

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