Tech Companies Taking Risk Off The Road
Day-by-day, technology companies are starting to catch up to traditional driving risk factors through an array of innovative new systems and products. Over the last several years, some of the best tech-geared minds have made it their mission to give law enforcement, commercial carriers, and the individual much-needed tools in the fight against damages and health risks incurred as a result of an auto accident.
Here are two of our favorites!
StarChase is a law-enforcement solution that empowers officers in pursuit of a fugitive to fire a GPS tracker onto the fugitive’s vehicle, thus making the high-speed chase a thing of the past.
Once the tracker attaches to the intended vehicle, it feeds all coordinates to law enforcement officials and allows them to plan a careful, calculated approach to apprehending the fugitive without putting bystanders in danger.
It’s a good thing, too, because out of the 360 deaths that occurred as a result of high-speed pursuits last year, one-third were bystanders.
How It Works
The firing apparatus that police use to establish a connection with the vehicle is referred to as a GPS gun, and it mounts on the police cruiser. The tracker features a strong adhesive that can attach to a moving vehicle without posing a risk to the public should the GPS gun misfire or not hit the target.
Location tracking signals are sent to officers “every three to five seconds” once the adhesive is in place, according to Mashable.
StarChase is currently available in a handful of departments throughout the United States, but these test markets have voiced satisfaction with the results. Costs range from $4,400 to $4,900.
Royal Automotive Club of Western Australia with Emotiv EPOC
Texting behind the wheel and other forms of distracted driving behaviors have become something of an epidemic in recent years. While driving under the influence of alcohol was once the No. 1 driving fear, these days it’s the fear that the other driver is going to cause an accident because they were in the middle of responding to something on their smartphone.
Enter the Royal Automotive Club of Western Australia (RAC) and their Attention Powered Car.
How It Works
The prototype automobile uses the Emotiv EPOC neural headset to read brainwaves and detect changes in normal focus patterns. When a driver becomes distracted, the headset picks up on it and signals to the car to slow down regardless of driver control. The innovation is operational, but it won’t be going into production any time soon. However, the Emotiv EPOC neural headset is further along and could be incorporated into future vehicles.
We can definitely see insurers embracing such technology, offering discounts similar to what is offered to low-mileage drivers. For instance, a carrier might consider percentage discounts on premiums by monitoring use of the headset device, which would likely send usage data automatically, once linked to an account. If a user meets certain minimum requirements for use, it will show in the data, and thus qualify him for a reduced premium.
New innovations designed to make the highways safer for all drivers are constantly being developed. By incorporating location tracking technologies and automated vehicle response based on brainwave patterns, StarChase, RAC, and Emotiv, have shone a light on a future where traffic fatalities become fewer and fewer. In turn, this can reduce premium increases, healthcare costs, and emergency services.
Which tech companies do you think are making the biggest difference in taking risk off the road?