Visibility is a key part of road safety - you need to see well in all conditions and other drivers need to see you. Good headlamps make night driving a lot safer.
Some modern cars have advanced head lighting systems. These improve your view of the road as they adapt the beam pattern and direction of the light according to the driving conditions.
Emergency brake lighting systems make your brake lights flash in an emergency braking situation. This can reduce your chance of a rear-end collision.
Some cars are fitted with systems that can 'look' around your car and alert you to a potentially dangerous situation, e.g. a car in your blind spot or a car that has suddenly slowed ahead.
Dedicated daytime running lights dramatically improve the visibility of the car to other road users.
This detects other vehicles in adjacent lanes to the driver's 'blind spot' and alerts the driver of their presence.
On a motorway, a car following far behind can be clearly seen in rear view mirrors. However, as the car nears you, a point is reached where it cannot be seen in either of your interior or exterior mirrors. Typically this occurs when the car is just behind and to one side of the vehicle it is overtaking. It is a common mistake for drivers to change lanes when there is a vehicle in this so-called 'blind spot'. This is a manoeuvre that causes many crashes on European motorways.
Several manufacturers have developed systems to monitor the blind spot and help a driver change lanes safely. Some systems are camera-based whereas others rely on radar. Either way, the area to one side and to the rear of the vehicle is monitored. The driver is then warned when a vehicle is in a position where it may not be seen in the rear view mirrors.
This system detects vehicles approaching from the side at intersections. It alerts drivers to a possible crash.
This system recognises lane markings and alerts the driver if a lane boundary is crossed.
Lane Support Systems can assist and warn you when you unintentionally leave the road lane or when you change lane without indication.
Lane Departure Warning
Several manufacturers have developed technologies that warn the driver when their car is getting close to a lane marking. Different systems use different warnings: some give an audible signal while others use a vibrating steering wheel to simulate the feeling of the car running over a 'rumble strip'. It aims to make the driver aware that the car is in danger of crossing the line. Some systems need a line only on one side of the vehicle while other systems rely on having a distinct marking on either side.
Lane departure warning systems rely on distinct lane markings. Their effectiveness is reduced if lines cannot be clearly distinguished, such as in heavy rain or fog, or if the road markings are obscured by mud or snow. In these cases, an indication is given to the driver that the system is unable to assist.
Lane Keep Assist
Lane-Keep Assist systems address similar crash situations to the Lane Departure Warning. Whereas warning systems rely on the driver to take corrective action, Lane Keep Assist also proactively steers the car back into the lane. When the car is close to a marking, the system gently steers the car away from the line until it is safely within the lane. The system can steer the car either by applying gentle braking to one wheel or in the case of electric steering systems, by applying a direct steering input.
A headlight control system that automatically switches the headlights on and off according to ambient light levels.
A signal that indicates to road users at the rear of a vehicle that it is braking heavily. It can be in the form of rapid flashing of the brake lamps or automatic application of the hazard lamps.
Headlights and associated lights that adjust their direction and intensity to provide additional illumination on curves, turns, and hills. They also highlight potential hazards.
It makes use of a forward-looking camera to detect light sources ahead. In the case of oncoming vehicles, it will automatically switch the lights to low beam to avoid glare. Additionally, the system will detect red tail lights ahead, to make sure motorists in front are not distracted by high beam lights in their rear view mirrors. The high beam is automatically deactivated in urban areas.
Systems that use night-vision technology (e.g. infra-red) to enhance driver vision.
Use of wireless technologies to enhance safety through communication between vehicles and Infrastructure (I2V & V2I) and between Vehicles (V2V). Infrastructure-based warning systems and inter-vehicle warning systems may alert drivers to upcoming hazards, crashes, approaching emergency vehicles, bypass routes, traffic lights etc.
Visual aids (e.g. camera) to improve your rearward field of view. It also has sensors that detect objects in the path of a reversing vehicle.
This automatically maximises use of the headlamp high beam facility to improve driver vision during night conditions.
These are a modern, brighter type of headlamp that can improve visibility when driving at night.