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New laws on car safety systems are undoubted lifesaver, says IAM RoadSmart

Plans to mandate advanced safety systems, including autonomous emergency braking (AEB) and intelligent speed limiters, on all new cars have been greeted as an “undoubted lifesaver” by IAM RoadSmart.

A provisional EU deal on the legislation was reached Monday night (25th March) in Strasbourg after the transport policies were greenlighted by members of the European Parliament’s Committee on Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO) last month. The policies – known as the Third Mobility Package – would see a range of different systems, including advanced safety features such as autonomous emergency braking (AEB) with pedestrian and cyclist detection and overridable intelligent speed assistance (ISA), alcohol interlock installation facilitation, drowsiness and attention detection and accident data recorders, be required on new cars within the next three years. New lorries will be expected to have better levels of direct vision to give drivers a better chance of seeing vulnerable road users such as pedestrians and cyclists.

IAM RoadSmart has welcomed the moves, which could save 25,000 lives in the first 15 years of implementation.

Neil Greig, IAM RoadSmart director of policy and research, said: “It should be remembered that excessive speeding is a factor in 14% of fatal crashes whereas human error is present in 64%. Speed limiters have a role to play but on their own cannot eliminate all crashes.

“Advanced drivers don’t need to be reminded electronically what the speed limit is, but for others it could be a real life-saver, and help people not lose their driving licences at the same time.

“ISA as proposed for all new cars after 2022 will be overrideable so it is not the ‘big brother’ solution that some sources suggest.

“IAM RoadSmart believe the EU package of measures is important for road safety. Drivers and fleets can lead the way by specifying options such as autonomous braking tomorrow.”

Written by Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for nearly 20 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. As Business Editor, Natalie ensures the group websites and newsletters are updated with the latest news.

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