Vehicle Safety Technology (VST) in the automotive industry refers to special technology (advanced driver-assistance systems) developed to ensure the safety and security of automobiles and passengers. The term encompasses a broad umbrella of projects and devices within the automotive world. Notable examples include car-to-computer communication devices which utilize GPS tracking features, geo-fencing capabilities, remote speed sensing, theft deterrence, damage mitigation, and vehicle-to-vehicle communication.
One method for reducing automobile accidents involves allowing vehicles to communicate with each other. This technology has been researched since 1997, and in its current form was endorsed by the National Transportation Safety Board. Wireless car-to-car communication would allow for instant accurate sensing of distance between vehicles and blind spot monitoring. Researchers at the German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence indicate that the 34,000 preventable auto deaths in the United States could be dramatically reduced by these technologies. In June 2013, a large-scale test of this technology was completed in Washington D.C. under the direction of United States Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood.
Electronic Stability Control (ESC) helps to avoid a crash by significantly reducing the risk of your car going into a skid during a sudden emergency manoeuvre such as avoiding an obstacle in front of you. ESC identifies this risk early and stabilizes the car by braking individual wheels.
Warning and Emergency Braking Systems detect at an early stage the danger of an accident with the vehicle in front of you. In the case of a potential collision, they warn you about the danger, and when there is no reaction to the warning, the technologies activate the brakes together with systems such as seat belt pretension to avoid or mitigate a crash. Advanced Brake Warning alerts the driver as to how hard the driver in front of them is pressing down on the brakes.
Blind Spot Monitoring helps you avoid a crash with a vehicle in the lane next to you by continuously screening the blind spots to the side of your vehicle.
Lane Support Systems can assist and warn you when you unintentionally leave the road lane or when you change lanes without indication. Sometimes a moment of inattention is enough to make your vehicle stray from its lane. The systems monitor the position of the vehicle in the road lane and while Lane Departure Warning System warns you if the car unintentionally wanders from the path, Lane Keeping Support helps you correct the course of your car. Lane Departure Warning System has been recommended for inclusion in all next-generation cars by the United States government.
Speed Alert helps you keep the correct speed and avoid speed related traffic crashes and speeding. Speed Alert informs you about the speed limits and tells you when you are about to exceed them.
Historically, accidents where vehicle flip over have been the most damaging to life and property. Therefore, new technology has been developed to allow vehicles to prevent rollover. When certain essential factors are detected, including sudden swerving and undue acceleration around corners, the vehicle automatically reduces speed to prevent rollover.