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Sharing the Road with High-Tech Cars Could Pose a Challenge for Drivers This Labor Day Weekend

ADEPT Driver Premiers New Video About Semi-Autonomous Vehicles

Elk Grove, CA, September 1, 2017 – As millions of drivers hit the road this Labor Day weekend they may find themselves behind a car weaving in the lane in front of them. While this erratic driving could be due to the driver being distracted, it could be because the car is being driven by a computer. Many new cars sold today have technologies that take over driver controls, and some attempt to drive themselves under certain conditions. While the percentage of these cars is relatively small today, they are growing at a dramatic rate. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in five years over half of the cars on the road are forecasted to have some self-driving features. The chances are high that you will be in or driving near one of these cars this weekend.

“While some new technologies such as lane departure warnings have been proven to be effective at reducing collisions, the truth is that the sensors or equipment in vehicles with semi-autonomous driving technology can fail, get confused or malfunction,” said Dr. Richard Harkness, CEO of ADEPT Driver. “Some technologies like lane centering work in certain conditions but are not perfected yet and can cause the car to weave within the lane, drift over lines, miss turns or make unintended turns. This can lead to tragic consequences if drivers are not prepared to quickly assume control of their vehicle. Drivers in semi-autonomous vehicles cannot become complacent. They need to stay alert to driving conditions, keep their hands on the wheel and be ready to assume control of the vehicle at all times. All road users need to be aware of cars behaving erratically regardless of who or what is driving the car.”

ADEPT Driver, a California based research and development company that builds crash avoidance training software, released a new video to help drivers understand the difference between semi-autonomous vehicles and autonomous vehicles, and to share strategies that drivers can use to avoid collisions while sharing the road with cars that have varying levels of autonomous technology.

ADEPT Driver programs teach drivers key crash avoidance skills which are essential in an era of evolving auto technology:

  • Visual search
  • Hazard detection
  • Speed and space management    
  • Knowing your escape routes
  • Judging safe gaps in traffic flow
  • Risk perception

 “Whether you are driving a semi-autonomous vehicle, or sharing the road with one, the skills you learn in ADEPT Driver programs can help you drive safely as vehicles gradually evolve to full automation,” Dr. Harkness said.