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Introduction of autonomous vehicles may be slow

North Carolina motorists may have heard a great deal from industry leaders like Google and Tesla about the development of autonomous vehicles. Early predictions about their adoption have been optimistic. For example, in 2014, one analyst with Morgan Stanley predicted there would be fully autonomous vehicles on highways by 2019. A former Uber CEO said that by 2030 its fleet would be fully autonomous. Multiple car manufacturers said autonomous vehicles would be for sale by the end of the decade.

Developers say device will help prevent drowsy driving

North Carolina drivers who experience fatigue while behind the wheel may be able to purchase a device that is supposed to detect and wake up drowsy motorists. The product is worn on the wrist and measures heart rate and sweat to determine when a person is falling asleep.

The link between speed limits and roadway deaths

North Carolina residents may be interested to know that according to a study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, there were 33,000 deaths attributable to higher speed limits in the past 20 years. However, that number may be higher. In 2013, there were 1,900 deaths attributed to higher speed limits, which was roughly the same number of lives saved by driver and passenger frontal airbags.

A stronger economy means higher road fatalities

North Carolina residents are probably aware that the economy has been on the upswing, but what they may not know is that economic improvement is linked to more driver deaths. When an economy is healthier, there are more drivers on the road more often. The more a driver is on the road, the higher the risk of being in an accident.

Tesla Model S fails IIHS crash test

North Carolina residents looking to purchase a new car may be interested to learn that the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave three vehicles the highest rating for crash worthiness. However, three other vehicles that were also tested by the IIHS failed a major test. One of these vehicles was the Tesla Model S.

Driverless cars may take awhile

Many North Carolina motorists are likely aware of the development of driverless cars. Once operational, the cars may make the roads safer by eliminating the risks caused by negligent, impaired or reckless drivers. In addition, individuals with disabilities or who are otherwise unable to drive would have significantly more mobility.

Road rage poses a growing threat to driver safety

Anger and aggression can be dangerous on the North Carolina roadways, and the problem may be growing. A study by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found that almost 80 percent of drivers had expressed serious aggression, anger or road rage while driving in the past year. Road rage can lead to car accidents that put people in other vehicles at risk.

How properly restraining children in cars could save lives

The Journal of Pediatrics recently published research that shows that North Carolina had the fourth-highest number of child fatalities from traffic accidents that occurred between 2010 and 2014. During that time period, 132 children died. However, North Carolina is not among the states with the most fatalities when the same statistic is considered percentage wise, or per 100,000 children.

Device may identify drivers whose phone use causes crashes

It may be possible to determine whether North Carolina drivers involved in accidents were using their phones at the time if adoption of a new technology called the "textalyzer" becomes widespread. This device can be attached to a phone and lets law enforcement know what the last actions of the driver were. While safety advocates have praised the device, privacy advocates are concerned about its impact on civil liberties. However, a man who demonstrated the device for reporters and lawmakers in New York says that it only collects very limited information. The device can also tell whether a person is using the phone hands-free.

How to obtain compensation for PTSD in car crashes

Depending on the circumstances of a car accident, it may be possible for victims in North Carolina and elsewhere to ask for damages related to PTSD. To successfully make a claim for mental distress, a doctor must make a correct diagnosis of the condition. The practitioner must be qualified to make the diagnosis, and it must be proven that the PTSD was caused by the accident.

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