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    Thread: Are "safety" features making us worse drivers?

    1. Feels Like the First Time DeeJoker's Avatar
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      02-15-2017 10:32 AM #1
      I was reading about the backup assist on the newer F-series, and got to thinking:

      Are the various "safety" devices like park assist, trailer backup assist, backup cams, lane departure warnings, etc making us less observant and thus worse drivers?

      Is our dependency on "safety" devices is outstripping actual skill required to operate a motor vehicle?



      Also, get off my lawn!
      The above post may contain opinions, coarse language, offensive terms, spelling mistakes, and/or improper grammar. You have been warned.

    2. Member George Bluth's Avatar
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      02-15-2017 10:34 AM #2
      Nope.

    3. Moderator DanG's Avatar
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      02-15-2017 10:35 AM #3
      Yes they are. They're also enabling older people who shouldn't be driving to keep driving a bit longer.

      All these safety features are great, but what happens when they fail? Most rely on electronics and they will die at some point.
      °.lllllll.°

    4. Senior Member Metallitubby's Avatar
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      02-15-2017 10:46 AM #4
      typing vs. handwriting

    5. Member Bibs's Avatar
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      02-15-2017 10:51 AM #5
      It can make bad drivers worse. I was driving with my sister, and she commented how she doesn't have to blind-spot check any more. If her amber mirror warning lights aren't illuminated, she just moves over.

      She crashed her last vehicle (Mazda 5) at least 4 times...that I know of. 3 times she was cited for these "accidents", that I know of.

    6. Member
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      02-15-2017 10:58 AM #6
      I think so. Much as the introduction of ABS means that a lot of us don't properly know how to threshold brake.

      I would imagine that things like backup cameras and lane assist have saved a few competent drivers from near accidents, so they indubitably have their place, but people will come to rely on them as well, forfeiting the need to check blind spots, etc etc.

    7. Member TheDeckMan's Avatar
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      02-15-2017 11:02 AM #7
      Without a doubt worse.
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    8. I hibernate. Just like the Turtles! GoHomePossum's Avatar
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      02-15-2017 11:03 AM #8
      Absolutely.

      But it's just a teething period until full autonomy takes over. So just have to suffer through it.
      I now have an InstaGram: emmettlodge

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      02-15-2017 11:04 AM #9
      No.

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    10. Senior Member AZGolf's Avatar
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      02-15-2017 11:09 AM #10
      Accident statistics say no. Driving distractions, with smartphones being the biggest growth categories, are absolutely making drivers worse though.


    11. Member CGY_GLI's Avatar
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      02-15-2017 11:09 AM #11
      For the people who don't understand that these are "driver assistance" features, I think it's making them worse drivers, because they rely on them. If someone has these but continues to do their manual checks (shoulder checks and whatnot), then I don't think it necessarily makes them a worse driver.
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    12. Member George Bluth's Avatar
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      02-15-2017 11:10 AM #12
      Quote Originally Posted by GoHomePossum View Post
      Absolutely.

      But it's just a teething period until full autonomy takes over. So just have to suffer through it.
      Tell us more of your suffrage.

    13. I hibernate. Just like the Turtles! GoHomePossum's Avatar
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      02-15-2017 11:11 AM #13
      Quote Originally Posted by George Bluth View Post
      Tell us more of your suffrage.
      I identify as African American.
      I now have an InstaGram: emmettlodge

    14. Member NeverEnoughCars's Avatar
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      02-15-2017 11:13 AM #14
      Quote Originally Posted by George Bluth View Post
      Nope.
      Quote Originally Posted by s2kvondeutschland View Post
      No.

      Sent from my XT1650 using Tapatalk
      Quote Originally Posted by AZGolf View Post
      Accident statistics say no.

      So if we were to remove all the ABS, stability management systems, traction control, etc from vehicles the crash rate would not increase?
      Quote Originally Posted by Turbio! View Post
      Pedantry: winning arguments through exasperation since 1651. An Old World Tradition!
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    15. Member George Bluth's Avatar
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      02-15-2017 11:17 AM #15
      Quote Originally Posted by NeverEnoughCars View Post
      So if we were to remove all the ABS, stability management systems, traction control, etc from vehicles the crash rate would not increase?
      Quote Originally Posted by DeeJoker View Post
      Are the various "safety" devices like park assist, trailer backup assist, backup cams, lane departure warnings, etc making us less observant and thus worse drivers?

    16. Semi-n00b
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      02-15-2017 11:20 AM #16
      We already live in a world where people can't pay attention to anything for more than the blink of an eye, I tend to think most of the 'driver assist' stuff like automatic braking, blind spot detection etc just feeds into this and ends up making people less attentive and therefor more dangerous. That being said, since most people will never learn how to threshold brake anyway, I think ABS is probably a good thing for most drivers......

    17. Member NeverEnoughCars's Avatar
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      02-15-2017 11:22 AM #17
      Quote Originally Posted by George Bluth View Post
      The question was just "safety" features. He listed a few and I listed a few.
      My question still stands.
      Quote Originally Posted by Turbio! View Post
      Pedantry: winning arguments through exasperation since 1651. An Old World Tradition!
      "Now i am become death the destroyer of worlds."-bhagavad gita
      “Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.” -T.S. Eliot

    18. Member George Bluth's Avatar
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      02-15-2017 11:23 AM #18
      You're good.

    19. Member whiteboy1's Avatar
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      02-15-2017 11:24 AM #19
      My $0.02, it depends on who it's getting "worse" for.


      My final project for econ in college was whether seat belt use laws were cost effective. TLDR, accidents to bicyclists and pedestrians increased, but driver and passenger damage decreased.


      It's not a great example (too simple, assuming) but think of how a persons behavior behind the wheel in these two scenarios:

      A. Driving with no safety devices and a giant spike on the wheel facing the driver.
      vs
      B. Driving in a fully prepped race car with the driver decked out in safety equipment.
      Quote Originally Posted by uncleho
      Before you take the tact of denigrating a group, you should empathize with the situation/history and understand the facts. It might not make for great debate on forums, but it helps with personal awareness.
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      Empathy isn't hard. You don't have to feel what other people feel to be understanding or trust that not everyone has the same perspective.

    20. 02-15-2017 11:26 AM #20
      It probably enables new drivers to be less capable, unless they take an interest in old metal.
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    21. I hibernate. Just like the Turtles! GoHomePossum's Avatar
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      02-15-2017 11:35 AM #21
      Quote Originally Posted by spoonie View Post
      It probably enables new drivers to be less capable, unless they take an interest in old metal.
      Driving my Jeep regularly has made me a better driver. Drum brakes, no ABS, mediocre tires and questionable seatbelts makes you think ahead of every mile.
      I now have an InstaGram: emmettlodge

    22. Senior Member
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      02-15-2017 11:40 AM #22
      Quote Originally Posted by DanG View Post
      Yes they are. They're also enabling older people who shouldn't be driving to keep driving a bit longer.

      All these safety features are great, but what happens when they fail? Most rely on electronics and they will die at some point.
      In the "good old days", driver education classes included instruction on how to safely stop a car experiencing a failure like:

      * Service brake failure.
      * Accelerator stuck down.
      * Hood latch failure causing hood to fly up.

      Perhaps that means that better car reliability (to the point that such failures are rare) is letting more people drive without needing to know how to recover from such failures? Never mind other issues like weak windshield wipers, weak headlamps, lack of rear and side window defoggers, difficult to adjust mirrors, difficult to use seat belts, etc..

      But then death rates from car crashes have gone down considerably over the years.

      ( By Dennis Bratland - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/inde...curid=17092427 )

    23. Senior Member
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      02-15-2017 11:44 AM #23
      Quote Originally Posted by odj View Post
      I would imagine that things like backup cameras and lane assist have saved a few competent drivers from near accidents, so they indubitably have their place, but people will come to rely on them as well, forfeiting the need to check blind spots, etc etc.
      Regarding blind spots, do they still teach people to turn their side mirrors to see the side of their own cars, typically resulting in unnecessary duplication of coverage with the center mirror and large blind spots on the rear quarters (in a car, as opposed to a cargo van, bus/RV, or vehicle towing a trailer)?

      In most cars, the mirrors can be turned somewhat outward to minimize blind spots.
      http://www.caranddriver.com/features...id-blind-spots

    24. Member 2.0T_Convert's Avatar
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      02-15-2017 11:44 AM #24
      Quote Originally Posted by DanG View Post
      All these safety features are great, but what happens when they fail? Most rely on electronics and they will die at some point.
      A typical passenger aircraft will fly for 25 years and 60,000 - 75,000 pressurization cycles (takeoffs and landings).

      Are planes less safe today because they feature more electronics and operate for decades?
      Sent from my tablet while sipping weak drinks over fancy brunch with a view

    25. Member gonzo08452's Avatar
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      02-15-2017 11:45 AM #25
      I was a passenger in an accident as teen under the 'singing and dancing' catergory

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