How tech can make you a safer driver

This photo provided by BMW is an example of a modern infotainment system that has multiple methods of input. Technology is helping to make driving safer for motorists and their passengers. (Courtesy of BMW via AP)

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This photo provided by BMW is an example of a modern infotainment system that has multiple methods of input. Technology is helping to make driving safer for motorists and their passengers. (Courtesy of BMW via AP)

Technology has touched all aspects of modern life, including the way people drive. For example, the days of printing directions in advance of long car trips are long gone thanks to global positioning systems (GPS) that are now built in to cars or easily accessible via smartphones. But technology hasn’t just made it easier to get from point A to B. It’s also made such journeys safer.

Modern automobiles are loaded with bells and whistles, many of which are designed to make it safer to operate and travel in moving vehicles. In recognition of the effectiveness of safety features like advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS), many insurance companies offer significant discounts to drivers who use them. Researchers with the insurance comparison website Insurify note that some insurers offer 10% discounts on premiums to drivers who use features like an ADAS while driving.

Drivers interested in tech-based safety features for their vehicles can consider these options.

Heated wiper blades: Ice and snow pose a significant threat to drivers and their passengers. According to the Federal Highway Administration, 70% of roads in the United States are located in snowy regions, while Canadians need no such statistics to know that their roads are subjected to heavy snowfall each winter as well. Visibility is easily compromised when driving in snowy, icy conditions. Heated wiper blades can quickly melt snow and ice buildup on a windshield, making it easier for drivers to see the road ahead. Such blades also save drivers from the unenviable task of scraping ice off their windshields.

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Night view assistance: Many drivers admit to experiencing difficulty driving at night. Night view assistance technologies have been offered by luxury automakers for several years, and these devices offer more visibility than standard headlights. Some systems employ infrared emitters in headlight buckets and mounted infrared cameras that identify and detect animals, pedestrians and other objects at night. Drivers simply activate their systems on their vehicle dashboards and are then alerted when the systems detect objects drivers may not see on their own.

Warning systems: Warning systems have long been a standard in modern vehicles. Such systems utilize sensors and motion technology to alert drivers to potential problems. Lane assist technologies alert drivers when their vehicles begin to drift out of their lanes and also when they are attempting to change lanes. These systems are now widely available, but they can be turned on and off, so drivers should make sure their systems are always on.

Technology is helping to make driving safer for motorists and their passengers. Utilizing systems and apps designed to improve safety on the road can reduce drivers’ risk of being involved in motor vehicle accidents.

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