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Older drivers and autonomous vehicle technology

Many of the cars and trucks offered for sale in Missouri contain sophisticated electronic systems that can actually take over the driving duties in emergency situations and either brake sharply to avoid a collision or steer safely around obstructions in the roadway. Auto manufacturers have pledged to make automatic braking systems standard equipment on virtually all passenger vehicles sold in the United States by 2022, and road safety experts believe that this type of technology could be of particular use to older drivers.

The human body deteriorates as it ages, and the reaction times and reflexes of older drivers are generally not as sharp as they are among their younger counterparts. Senior citizens also tend to be frail, and they can sometimes die after suffering injuries that younger drivers would likely recover from relatively quickly. Road safety advocates are concerned about this because the number of Americans 70 years of age or older is expected to increase by about 23 million by 2030.

Experts are hoping that technology can prevent a surge in the number of motor vehicle accidents involving older drivers, and the innovations are arriving far more quickly than many industry analysts predicted. Rear cameras that allow older drivers to see behind their vehicles without straining their necks will become mandatory equipment in 2018, and Google hopes to bring a fully autonomous vehicle to the market by 2020.

Car accident lawsuits often involve defendants and plaintiffs with very different accounts. In addition to containing safety systems that can prevent a crash, many modern automobiles feature devices that monitor performance and driver behavior. When defendants are unwilling to accept that they were the cause of an accident, personal injury attorneys may use this data to establish that they were operating their vehicles in a negligent manner.

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