Can Smart Headlights Prevent Car Accidents?
Although the headlight systems in the modern U.S. automobile have changed in design and sleekness, functionally they have remained relatively unchanged for the past half century. That has not been the case in other countries, as many car manufacturers worldwide have adopted adaptive headlight technology, otherwise known as smart headlights. However, recent legislature will change that, bringing better, safer headlight technology to the United States.
Since the 1960s, vehicles in the United States were federally mandated to have two separate headlight functions: a low beam and a high beam. Although better bulb technology and their implementation improved, they are still less superior to smart headlights, which is generally one bulb that adapts to its environment. Smart headlights:
- Use computers, sensors, and radar to detect the vehicle’s surroundings.
- The headlights then maneuver, sometimes with a shutter system, to brighten a driver’s view.
- The headlight beam is as bright as a normal high beam light.
- Can detect other car’s headlights and adjusts, as to not blind other drivers.
- Smart headlights can keep one headlight brighter than the other and can turn according to the steering input to illuminate corners.
Adaptive headlights systems may seem similar to automatic high beam systems, but those systems are slightly different and not as safe. Automatic high beam systems sometimes get confused with the lighting of other cars, streetlights, and traffic lights, and may not operate when they are needed. Smart headlights adapt to the environment, with high beams generally on all the time until the ambient lighting outside of the car gets brighter.
Safety Afforded by Smart Headlights
There are quite a few advantages that smart headlights bring to every driver, most of which is safety. According to studies by AAA, they predict that smart headlights can prevent over six percent of all car accidents caused by low light and visibility. Furthermore, the report notes that there are almost 300,000 low-light accidents that involve wildlife every year, but with smart light technology, AAA is predicted that number to be reduced by 18,000. This would result in over one billion dollars saved in economic damages, not to mention the thousands of lives that would be saved.
Smart headlights improve a driver’s visibility, simply providing better illumination when it is needed the most. Adaptive headlights scan the roadway and adjust as needed; instead of switching between two different sets of lights, the smart headlight system adapts one light, providing superior illumination to the roadway.
This technology is not just for good road conditions, but better for poor conditions such as foggy or rainy nights. Normal headlights are inadequate in fog conditions, as they reflect light back into the driver’s view, whereas smart headlights change the shape of the light to provide better visibility at different angles.
Smart headlights also do not annoy other drivers. With newer bulb technology, even low beam lights can easily distract or blind other drivers. Smart headlights sense other headlights and vehicles on the road and dim themselves as to not blind anyone, yet still provide adequate illumination for the driver.
Advanced headlight systems have been used in other countries for years now, but with federal programs starting to take shape, American cars will be adopting the new technology as well, and the roadways will be safer for all.
Washington DC Car Accident Lawyers at the Law Offices of Duane O. King Help Clients Recover from Their Injuries
If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your damages. You are encouraged to reach out to the Washington DC car accident lawyers at the Law Offices of Duane O. King. Our skilled legal team will thoroughly investigate the cause of the accident and help you get the compensation for which you are entitled. Call us today at 202-331-1963 or contact us online for a free consultation. Located in Washington, DC, we work with clients in Prince George’s County, including Laurel, Beltsville, Adelphi, College Park, Greenbelt, Mitchellville, Woodmore, Greater Upper Marlboro, Springdale, Largo, Bowie, Capitol Heights, District Heights, Forestville, Suitland, and Seat Pleasant, Clinton, Oxon Hill, Temple Hills, and Fort Washington.