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Widespread Adoption of Car Safety Features Could Take Decades

» Posted February 5, 2018Resources | Share This Post

Car safety features have improved dramatically, reducing the risks of auto accidents and reducing the likelihood of serious injuries in the event a crash occurs. Safety technologies don't work perfectly in every case, but new car owners are often protected by the California car lemon law if they have problems – and when the technology does work, it can significantly increase safety for vehicle occupants.

Unfortunately, not every vehicle is equipped with the latest in safety technology to keep drivers and passengers safe. As CNET recently reported, the Highway Loss Data Institute indicates that it can take as long as 30 years for there to be 95 percent adoption of new safety technologies within the car industry.

How Long Will it Take for Vehicle Safety Technologies to be Adopted?

CNET evaluated the common car safety technologies on the road and, based on the estimates from the Highway Loss Data Institute (HLDI) regarding adoption of new safety technologies, CNET estimated how long it would be before some of the newer safety features were adopted industry-wide.

According to CNET, the likely dates when some of these modern safety technologies will be adopted are as follows:

  • Rear-view cameras: These would typically be expected to face widespread adoption by 2039 if they followed customary patterns. However, rear-facing cameras are one of the few safety technologies that HLDI believes may buck the trend and be adopted sooner. In 2016, a quarter of new cars featured rear-facing cameras as a standard option, and another 1/3 of vehicles made rear-facing cameras available as an add-on. Further, all cars sold after May 2, 2018 are required by a federal mandate to be equipped with rear-facing cameras.
  • Rear parking sensors: This technology is expected to be adopted on a widespread basis by 2041.
  • Forward collision warning systems: These are expected to be installed in almost all new vehicles by 2043.
  • Blind spot monitoring and land departure warnings: Like forward collision warning systems, these are also expected to find their way into almost all new cars by 2043.
  • Auto-brake systems: This feature is expected to achieve widespread adoption by 2045.
  • Adaptive headlights: These are expected to be adopted throughout the auto industry by 2050.

However, while these timelines track if you look back at how long it took for older technologies to be adopted -- such as three-point seat belts which were brought to market in 1959 and which became standard in the late 1980's -- CNET cautions that the market for self-driving vehicles could potentially change the timeline for many of the technologies available today.

While all of these new technologies do a lot to increase safety, it is also important to remember that the more technologies that are in a vehicle, the more potential there is for problems to arise. If you buy a new car and there are issues with operations, you should consult with a California car lemon law attorney to find out about the options that are available to you.


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