Technology could soon be used to warn San Diego bikers of an impending
motorcycle crash. This is good news considering motorcyclists are nearly
30 times more likely to die in a crash than vehicle occupants. Overall,
motorcyclists account for 14% of all motor vehicle-related deaths, even
though motorcycles account for only 3% of vehicles on the road.
As we have previously discussed on this San Diego Injury Blog,
drivers are often at fault for motorcycle crashes. Examples include failing to exercise caution when turning, merging or
changing lanes; failing to recognize a motorcycle until it’s too
late, whether due to cell phone distraction or simply failing to pay close
attention to the roadway; and following a motorcycle too closely.
To protect motorcyclists, an Israeli company named Autotalks is working
to develop a Wi-Fi-based communication system that monitors vehicles in
the vicinity of a motorcycle and notifies riders when a crash is imminent.
The goal is to provide enough warning to avoid the collision.
Wired reports, the bike-to-vehicle (B2V) system relies on short-range communication
technology to “talk” with other vehicles in the area. Once
linked, the vehicles continuously share information, such as location,
speed, heading, and braking mode, with the goal of identifying potential
crash risks. Of course, the technology can only
protect riders from being injured in a motorcycle accident if all the vehicles on the road are similarly equipped.
While B2V is still in the testing phase, vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communication
could soon become a reality. Under a new rule currently under consideration
by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), V2V may
soon be required on light vehicles. If the technology proves successful,
the requirement could be expanded to motorcycles.
The proposed NHTSA rule mandates that all V2V devices “speak the
same language” through standardized messaging developed within the
industry. In a related initiative, the Federal Highway Administration
expects to issue guidance for Vehicle-to-Infrastructure (V2I) communications.
The technology allows vehicles to “talk” to roadway infrastructure
such as traffic lights, stop signs, and work zones.
According to NHTSA, V2V and V2I technology could potentially prevent or
mitigate the severity of up to 80% of non-impaired crashes, including
crashes at intersections or while changing lanes. In its rule proposal,
NHTSA highlighted that the technology could be particularly useful in
certain high-risk situations, such as when a driver needs to decide if
it is safe to pass on a two-lane road without a head-on collision, make
a left turn across oncoming traffic, or determine if an approaching vehicle
at an intersection appears to be on a collision course.
If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a California motorcycle crash, contact
a San Diego personal injury attorney at the Law Offices of Robert Vaage
for a free consultation.