Safety features for cars have progressed over the years. Seat belts, anti-lock break systems, airbags and electronic stability control are just a few. New technology has increased the amount of safety features that are available to consumers. Although they are extra-cost options at this point, the benefits of having these features outweigh the cost. Some features may be required in every car in the near future, but for now, if you’re looking to buy a new car or put in a few upgrades, be sure to consider these:
– Backup camera. This helps cover the blind spot that’s directly behind your car. Even if you use both your rear and side mirrors, there’s still a large blind spot, which increases with vehicle size. There could be children, toys or animals that are hidden by this spot, making it impossible to see them without a rear camera. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration states that “backover” incidents cause an average of 292 deaths and 18,000 injuries a year.
– Blindspot warning: A dashboard icon that lights up if another vehicle is in your blind spot. Some also come with an audible feature that beeps if you attempt to change lanes or put on your turn signal when someone is in your blind spot. This feature is highly recommended for teens and older drivers.
– Parking assist: Provides an audible warning when your vehicle is approaching a hazard when parking. Some parking assist displays even show lines that help with lining up your car to fit into a parking spot.
– Forward collision warning: Warns you when your vehicle is approaching another at a speed fast enough to cause a collision. Some systems even come with an automatic brake that avoids the collision all together. Forward collisions in vehicles with this feature are down 14%.
– Adaptive headlights: Changes your headlights to light up where your vehicle is headed, instead of where it currently is. It’s proven highly effective on dark corners and is great for those living in areas that are highly populated with deer.
– Voice control: Allows you make phone calls and can also help with climate control, navigation, windshield wipers and more with your voice, instead of your hands. It keeps the driver from being distracted when any of these things need to happen and keeps your hands on the wheel at all times.
– Lifebelt: Forces you to put on your seatbelt. If it is not buckled by the driver or any passenger, your car will not start. It ensures that everyone uses their seatbelt when the vehicle is in motion. If you un-buckle before the car is parked, the radio will shut off and an alarm will sound. From the years 1975-2004, seatbelts have saved 179,756 lives.