Safety features that should be optional in every car

Some safety features are soon going to become mandatory in all cars. However, there are additional systems that increase the level of occupant protection. Read on to know about them

By: | Published: April 8, 2017 11:50 PM

Cars sold in India will soon meet a certain safety standard, some of which will become mandatory. Basic safety features today in most variants of a car include ABS (Antilock Braking System), EBD (Electronic Brakeforce Distribution), and dual front airbags. While these are becoming common, there are other safety systems that also enhance this particular quotient in a vehicle.Here are some useful, but, not so common safety features available in some models sold in the country today.

Electronic Stability Control

Electronic Stability Control (ESC) prevents a vehicle from slipping and any loss of traction. ESC or traction control works with an electronically controlled system that applies brakes individually on each tyre and stabilise the car when it detects loss of traction while turning. Sensors detect the loss of control and automatically apply the brake to a particular wheel or more than one wheel when needed. This enhances the grip of the vehicle which in turn avoids oversteering, understeering or simply the loss of grip while turning.

Intelligent Speed Assist

Intelligent Speed Assist (ISA) activates when the driver exceeds the speed limit. It alerts the driver via audio or visual indication by determining the location of the car through GPS (Global Positioning System). It checks of the speed limit in that particular location and notifies the driver to slow down. The ISA system is fitted with a speed limiting function which also increases the pressure on the accelerator pedal when the driver exceeds the speed limit.

Driver Attention Detection

This safety feature detects if the driver is fatigued or drowsy and when detected, the system alerts her/him through an audio, visual or both warning signals. Vehicles fitted with this system mostly rely on the number of times the driver blinks their eye and even assess the movement of the eyelid. If it is slow, the system activates alerting the driver to take a break

Cruise Control

A Cruise Control is a system that when engaged, automatically controls the vehicle's speed and maintains a set speed as set by the driver. Once it is done, the driver does not have to give and throttle input and can concentrate better on the road. Most cars that have cruise control have steering mounted switches which can turn the feature on or off. Once the brake is applied, this system temporarily turns off until the time it is re-engaged.
Blindspot Warning System

A blind spot detection system warns a driver about any objects in the blind spot area which a driver is unable to see in the blind spot area of a vehicle. It is equipped with sensors in the ORVMs (Outside Rear View Mirrors) or IRVM (Internal Rear View Mirror) which warns the driver about any vehicle in the blind spot area through an audio or visual warning. While changing lanes or overtaking, the system, which works on another set of sensors, detects if there is an object in the blind spot area thereby alerting the driver.

Pre-crash Safety System

A pre-crash safety system warns the driver of an imminent crash and activates the seat belt pretensioners, airbags and auto locking of doors. It basically prepares the vehicle as well as its occupants by assessing their position during a crash, in case it cannot be avoided. It is activated by reading the driver's behaviour for panic reaction, radar sensors as well other sensors located in a car. The vehicle would also apply brakes in case it is equipped with autonomous braking.

Tyre Pressure Monitoring System
A Tyre Pressure Monitoring System or TPMS records real-time tyre pressure on each tyre in a car. It monitors the air pressure and displays information via sensors fitted for detecting low tyre pressure. In case the pressure is low, a warning light warns the driver. The indication can happen through the infotainment system or warning lamps on the instrument cluster. The system also provides information about a tyre's health.

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