If you decide to buy a new car today, chances are it will be equipped with the latest driving aids such as lane keeping assist and adaptive cruise control. When you step up a bit in the range, these aids even become systematic and can sometimes be dangerous.
A new study by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety has been published with alarming results. A large proportion of the systems that are supposed to help drivers make driving easier and less stressful are involved. Unfortunately, some drivers are over-reliant on these systems and end up being distracted.
Adaptive cruise control combined with lane keeping assist can give the impression that the car is driving completely autonomously. This is because one system manages speed and the other manages the steering of the vehicle. They are only assistances. Many people confuse these systems with something that does not yet exist: 100% autonomous driving without any driver intervention.
The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety has also shown that with these systems, drivers are almost twice as likely to be distracted as drivers not using these driving aids. However, these systems can be very useful if used properly. Manufacturers simply need to better explain the limits of their systems.
Photo credits Tesla