The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety has been successful in lobbying vehicle manufacturers to install technology on their products that can aid in recognizing pedestrians when the vehicle is in motion, which then triggers the automatic electronic braking system to engage when anything is detected. There has been a significant uptick in pedestrian accidents since 2009, and some type of measure was needed. They have been implemented as part of the drive to reduce the number of pedestrian accidents happening in states like Florida where people commonly walk to many destinations. For the most part, the equipment has worked as intended, but studies have shown there is still a problem.
The technology has shown general positive results for the most part in daylight or in well-illuminated areas along the road or in parking lots. After a study of daytime auto/pedestrian accidents, it was found that accident rates were reduced by up to 27% in one study and 30% in a follow-up.
Night study issues
The biggest problem that was found in the study focused on pedestrian accidents that occurred at night. While there was no increase in the accident rate, there was actually no change over the period as well from the previous year. The only significant reduction was in locations that had additional lighting in place for better viewing.
The equipment addition that worked in conjunction with the automatic braking systems consisted of two different types of cameras that were supposedly of equal quality. However, one type proved to be more efficient at instigating the AEB equipment on certain vehicle models.