Technology steers drivers away from side-swipe accidents

| Transport

Blind spot assist prevents side-swipe collisions

Ford takes its blind spot information system to a new level with steering intervention to prevent collisions

Switching lanes is a routine manoeuvre for regular motorway users, but even the most attentive drivers can sometimes fail to spot potentially hazardous situations developing, particularly in their blind spots. Failing to look properly or to judge another road user’s speed or direction was a factor in more than half of road accidents in Great Britain during 2018.

Ford has introduced a new technology designed to help drivers avoid blind spot collisions while travelling on multi-lane carriageways.

New Lane-Keeping System with Blind Spot Assist makes its global debut on the latest Ford Kuga SUV. The technology monitors the driver’s blind spot for vehicles approaching from behind, and can apply counter-steering to warn the driver and discourage a lane change manoeuvre if a potential collision is detected.

“Many drivers will at some point have been caught by surprise when another vehicle seemingly ‘appears out of nowhere’,” said Glen Goold, Kuga chief programme engineer. “Lane-Keeping System with Blind Spot Assist is like having an extra pair of eyes in the back of your head, helping prevent just a second’s lapse in judgement from escalating into something more serious.”

A development from BLIS

For more than a decade, Ford has offered Blind Spot Information System (BLIS) technology that can alert drivers to the presence of vehicles in their blind spot using a warning light in the door mirror.

The new Lane-Keeping System with Blind Spot Assist goes a step further by being able to apply a gentle force to the steering wheel to discourage drivers from changing lanes into the path of another road user and guide the vehicle away from danger.

The Kuga’s Blind Spot Assist radar sensors scan parallel lanes for vehicles up to 28 metres behind, 20 times per second, while driving at speeds from 40 mph to 124 mph. An intervention can be automatically activated if the control system senses a lane-change by monitoring road markings using the forward-facing camera, and the technology calculates that the two vehicles are on a collision course.

Lane-Keeping System with Blind Spot Assist can intervene to help prevent collisions with vehicles approaching with a closing speed of up to approximately 18 mph.

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