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New Car Technology May Not Lower Auto Insurance Rates

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety Senior Vice President Kim Hazelbaker said during a recent forum that new auto safety technologies could reduce accidents, but the effects on auto insurance remain to be seen...
October 9, 2014

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) Senior Vice President Kim Hazelbaker said during a recent forum that new auto safety technologies could reduce accidents, but the effects on auto insurance remain to be seen. While vehicles with crash avoidance systems, backup cameras, and other safety features can reduce accidents and injuries, these vehicles also are more expensive to repair when they do get into crashes; these systems do not work well all of the time, like in bad weather and at night; and some drivers turn off the systems because of annoying or false alarms.

IIHS estimates that one in three fatal crashes and one in five accidents with injuries could be prevented if all passenger vehicles were equipped with forward collision warning, lane departure warning, blind spot detection and other safety systems. Air bags, stability control and other safety systems have made driving safer over the past decade. Passenger car and truck accident fatalities nationwide dropped from about 32,300 in 2003 to about 21,700 in 2012—a decrease of about 33 percent, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

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