Pedestrian detection systems installed on some newer vehicles are supposed to help prevent accidents – but are they effective? Learn more about this technology and if it can be relied upon. If you were injured in an accident, you can discuss your claim with Goldberg Finnegan’s Silver Spring car accident attorneys when you schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.

How Effective are These Systems?

A recent study by AAA shows automatic emergency braking systems that have pedestrian detection technology do not perform consistently. Through testing using real-world scenarios, AAA found the technology did not detect pedestrians in multiple situations.

These systems have proven to be entirely ineffective after dark, when 75 percent of pedestrian accident deaths occur.

When Did These Systems Perform the Best?

Pedestrian detection technology featured in automatic emergency braking systems worked best when a vehicle was traveling 20 miles per hour and an adult walked in front. The technology helped reduce accidents by 40 percent. However, most of the systems tested at 30 mph failed to prevent a pedestrian crash.

Additional results of AAA’s simulated test include the following:

  • Collisions occurred 89 percent of the time when a child darted out from between vehicles, as the test vehicle traveled at 20 mph.
  • Immediately after a right turn, vehicles hit the adult pedestrian in every trial.
  • Collisions occurred 80 percent of the time as the vehicle approached two adult pedestrians on the roadside at a speed of 20 mph.
  • In all situations where the vehicle travelled at 30 mph, the pedestrian detection technology was ineffective.

None of the 2019 model vehicles used in the study were able to detect adult pedestrians after dark. These models include:

  • Chevrolet Malibu
  • Honda Accord
  • Tesla Model 3
  • Toyota Camry

Until pedestrian detection systems become more effective, AAA recommends drivers take certain actions to avoid pedestrian collisions:

  • Stay alert to your surroundings and do not rely on the pedestrian detection system to avoid a collision. Drivers need to remain engaged and allow the technology to serve as a backup measure, not the primary measure for accident prevention.
  • Thoroughly review the vehicle’s owner’s manual to understand the safety systems the vehicle is equipped with. Ask your dealer to explain the mechanics of the systems and what alerts the system gives, as well as what triggers the systems to initiate braking.
  • Take extra caution during nighttime driving, as after dark is the riskiest time for pedestrian accidents.

IIHS Study Shows Effectiveness Varies Between Different Vehicles

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety conducted a study of 16 mid-size cars’ pedestrian crash-prevention systems to determine their effectiveness. Four of the six top-performing vehicles were luxury cars while four non-luxury cars received basic ratings or lower.

The vehicles rated superior in the study included:

  • 2019 Audi A4 with standard system
  • 2019-2020 BMW 3 Series with standard system
  • 2019-2020 Mercedes-Benz C-Class with optional upgraded system
  • 2020 Subaru Outback with standard system
  • 2019-2020 Nissan Maxima with option 2019 system or standard 2020 system
  • 2019 Volvo S60 with standard system

Several other vehicles received an advanced rating, including the 2019-2020 Tesla Model 3 with a standard system, 2019-2020 Honda Accord with a standard system, and 2019-2020 Toyota Camry with a standard system.

Speak with Our Attorneys About Your Case

If you were injured in a pedestrian versus automobile accident, you may be eligible to pursue a claim for compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Goldberg Finnegan’s experienced attorneys provide free, no-obligation consultations so you can learn more about the legal options that may be available to you.

There is no obligation to hire our firm. If you choose Goldberg Finnegan to represent you, there are no upfront fees. We work on contingency, so you only pay us if we successfully recover compensation for you.