Are all of these technology upgrades such a good idea? 0

As car fans we love to hear of technology upgrades. Whether it’s a new entertainment system sitting in the middle of the car or a 3D satellite navigation feature, it is always exciting to hear.

It appears that the United States Government is not so keen to hear of this type of technology. They want car brands to develop in car entertainment devices which are far less distracting to drivers. Potentially certain devices within the car can cause an accident with the driver not properly concentrating on the road ahead.

Pressure by the Government

The pressure has recently been increased by the American Government. There set be a new set of guidelines which are not compulsory announced by the American Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. The guidelines will reference the cars in car communication, navigation devices and a car’s entertainment system.

Ray LaHood released a statement saying how helpful the new guidelines will prove to be. His exact words were “Distracted driving is a dangerous and deadly habit on America’s roadways – that’s why I’ve made it a priority to encourage people to stay focused behind the wheel. These guidelines are a major step forward in identifying real solutions to tackle the issue of distracted driving for drivers of all ages.”

The number of people who die due to traffic accidents in the United States has dipped by 1.6 per cent to a figure of 24,050 during the period of January to September of 2011.

Despite that, the increase and development more and more in car entertainment could prove to bring about more road deaths.

Barack Obama’s budget

The President of the United States, Barack Obama, has put forward a budget of $330 million dollars over the next six years for a distracting driver prevention programme.  America are clearly taking this issue very seriously.

The guidelines

The actual guidelines were developed by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (also known as the NHTSA). They state recommended criteria for electronic devices that are installed upon all vehicles when they are created. They are related to devices which need either visual or manual actions from the drivers to operate them.

Official phase 1 guidelines:

  • Reduce complexity and task length required by the device
  • Limit device operation to one hand only (leaving the other hand to remain on the steering wheel to control the vehicle)
  • Limit individual off-road glances required for device operation to no more than two seconds in duration
  • Limit unnecessary visual information in the driver’s field of view;
  • Limit the amount of manual inputs required for device operation.