Autonomous braking helps prevents rear-end shunts, research finds

Having autonomous braking in cars helps to reduce the likelihood of crashing into the back of the car in front, new research has found.

According to a study by EuroNCAP and ANCAP autonomous emergency braking leads to a 38 per cent reduction in real-world rear end crashes. The technology has become increasingly popular in new cars over recent years but prior to this research there had been little evidence to suggest that an automated system inside the car that performs emergency braking has any actual benefits.

Eliminating human error and slow reactions on the roads can make motorists safer by reducing the chances of a crash occurring. However, for the foreseeable future at least, the role of the driver will remain the most important element of road safety, and in reality accidents are always a risk – that is why those working in the motor trade industry, for whom cars are a valuable business asset, must have a road risks insurance policy in place that will offer financial cover just in case a car they are driving for business purposes is damaged.

The EuroNCAP and ANCAP study, entitled Effectiveness of Low Speed Autonomous Braking in Real World Rear End Crashes, focused purely on real-world data, rather than controlled experiments used by car manufacturers to test Autonomous Emergency Braking systems. The organisations have helped to created the Validating Vehicle Safety through Meta-Analysis (VVSMA) group, which brings together data and experts from governments, industry, consumer and insurance organisations.

Dr Michiel van Ratingen, secretary general of Euro NCAP, commented: “These findings strongly support our decision to make AEB technology a key discriminator in the safety rating of new vehicles. Through VVSMA, we will continue to monitor the effectiveness in reducing real-world crashes of the advanced systems that are promoted in order to validate and improve the overall star rating.”