Car safety is one of the most important topics in the automotive industry and the EU Commission have announced a total of 11 mandatory systems will be in place by 2021. The systems will be introduced into all new cars, saving an estimated 7300 lives and preventing 38,900 serious injuries between 2020 and 2030. The changes include reversing cameras, driver fatigue detection and autonomous emergency braking (AEB).
AEB has long been expected to become mandatory for all new cars. The system automatically applies a car’s brakes if a driver fails to slow down for an obstruction. According to Thatcham Research, AEB technology reduces crashes by 38%.
As part of the regulations, new cars brought into the EU marke will need to feature “overridable intelligent speed assistance.” This means traffic sign recognition cameras will work in tandem with a car’s cruise control, setting its speed based on the situation.
Two other features to come into effect are accident data recorders and pre-wiring for alcohol interlocks. The data recorders are designed to log telematic information after a collision, while the interlocks are meant to benefit chronic drink-drivers. The feature would stop a car being started without a ‘clean’ sample of breath being provided.
Some customers may be concerned that an increase in safety systems will make cars more expensive. But the EU Commission has said it will “have little or no impact on the price of new vehicles.”
The Commission’s Head of Markets, Elżbieta Bieńkowska announced the safety measures. “90% of road accidents are due to human error. The new mandatory safety features we propose today will reduce the number of accidents and pave the way for a driverless feature of connected and automated driving.”
The UK’s Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety (PACTS) has welcomed the proposals. Executive director, David Davies said the council “urges the government to get behind the Commission’s proposals and ensure that they are adopted without delay.”
Below is a full list of the new mandatory safety systems:
- Advanced emergency braking
- Driving fatigue detection
- Emergency stop signal
- Alcohol interlock installation
- Accident data recorder
- Improved seatbelts
- Intelligent speed assistance
- Safety glass
- Lane keeping assistance
- Reversing cameras
- Pole side impact occupant protection