It’s an undeniable fact that our reflexes slow as we get older. Likewise, it can be more challenging to remain focused on the task of driving as we get on in years. Thankfully, our elders can benefit from modern collision-avoidance technology to help them drive more safely. Let’s look at a few popular technology upgrades to help you or a mature family member navigate busy streets and roads.
Blind-Spot Monitoring Systems
Having a vehicle upgraded with a blind spot monitoring system is one of the best investments in preventing accidents while a vehicle is driving on the street or highway. These radar-based systems detect the presence of a car, truck or motorcycle in an adjacent lane. Once detected, a small indicator on the dash or A-pillar illuminates to let the driver know something is beside them. If the driver activates the turn signal, a loud beep will warn them not to change lanes.
Most blind spot monitoring systems also include a cross-traffic alert system. When backing out of a parking spot, the monitoring field changes from long and narrow to a wide and shallow pattern to detect vehicles coming down the road or driveway or in a parking lot. These systems produce a loud beep and flash a warning indicator to let the driver know someone is approaching long before they can be seen out a side window.
Backup Camera Systems
Backing out of a garage, into a parking spot or exiting a parking stall in a busy plaza or shopping mall can be nerve-racking. While it would be great to have someone standing behind the car or truck to help you navigate, this isn’t often possible. Having a backup camera system installed in your vehicle will not only let you know if a vehicle is approaching, but it can show you if there are objects or people in your path long before you get close to them.
Backup camera systems can often be integrated into the color display in a newer vehicle. Another option is an aftermarket rearview mirror upgrade with a built-in display. If you have a motorhome or RV, a stand-alone display screen is also an option to make parking and maneuvering safer. The camera image displays automatically when the transmission is put into reverse, so there are no buttons to remember to press.
Parking Sensor Systems
Another great safety solution to help prevent accidents while maneuvering a vehicle is to have a parking sensor system installed. These systems include an array of ultrasonic sensors that will alert the driver when an object, vehicle or pedestrian is behind their car or truck. The sensors mount in the bumper, and they can be painted to match the vehicle if you desire. Some solutions also include forward-facing sensors to help you park close to the curb without risking damage to your vehicle.
Though it doesn’t sound like a fancy technology, being able to see where you’re going when it’s dark is essential for safe driving. If you or a loved one has an older vehicle, upgrading the lighting system can significantly affect how much can be seen after the sun sets. High-output LED and HID replacement headlight bulbs can double or triple the light produced by a factory-installed lighting system so the driver can see farther down the road.
As with any upgrade involving a vehicle safety system, the upgrade must be designed specifically for the application (reflector or projector light assemblies). In addition, the system must be aimed correctly to avoid blinding oncoming drivers. Improperly installed lighting upgrades can be extremely dangerous to everyone on the road, so be sure to seek the assistance of a shop specializing in this type of work.
Drive More Safely with Modern Collision Avoidance Technology
If you or a family member could benefit from modern collision avoidance technology, you can use the Vision Zero Automotive Network dealer locator to help find a specialty mobile enhancement retailer near you. These shops specialize in vehicle safety and collision avoidance upgrades. A backup camera, parking sensor system or blind spot monitoring system can help keep everyone on the road safer.