Guest Post: Key Car Driving Technologies to Assist with Seniors (conclusion)

I’d like to thank Craig Hammontree of Healthmax360.com for sharing this fascinating article, the first part of which appeared on this blog last Sunday.

Voice-activated driving help
While it’s great to have a map on your phone, it isn’t all that helpful when you’re driving. Looking down at a screen while behind the wheel is a very bad idea and not one that you should practice.

However, a GPS system can be a great help. Now, you can have the convenience of a digital map and some help avoiding traffic with a voice-activated navigation system.

These new systems are an extension of the basic map. They alert you to traffic snags to help you avoid them, give you options for alternative routes and find places based on what you already know.

Going to a new restaurant and not sure where it is? That’s okay – just say the name the system will do the rest.

Back-up Cameras


The United States Department of Transportation is a huge fan of these cameras and wants to see a lot more of them by 2018. According to the current data, this basic addition to help drivers back out of a parking space or driveway can make us up to 90 percent safer as we move around in cars. By being able to see what’s directly behind us with the help of some easy tech, we can avoid hitting animals and small children that happen to run into our paths.

The camera gives the driver a quick glance at what’s directly behind the car. The image is projected on a small screen just next to the driver, so no more twisting around to see what’s back there. Not having to guess what’s happening behind your large, heavy vehicle is a relief to any driver and can help us all move more safely on and off the road.

Swivel Seats
This technology is more basic and not as shiny and new as the others, but it deserves a mention because it solves the problem of getting in and out of a car.

The basic addition to your driver’s seat helps with stiff knees or longer legs as it swoops you over to the door side and lets you skip the difficult business of judging the distance between your leg and the car frame. The added handle can help with standing and sitting and just makes exiting a car much easier and smoother.

If you already have some great, slick tech in your car and just need a little boost for your mobility, this is the way to go.

A built-in helper
Automatic systems such as OnStar are made to help respond to crashes, assist in navigation or just make suggestions if you’re not quite sure which place to go for dinner. This quick connection to an actual human is the equivalent to having your phone on during the entire drive – if anything unsafe is taking place, your assistant jumps in and calls authorities, checks on you and keeps you calm. These are especially great if you live in a place where it can be difficult to get roadside assistance, or if you’re far away from law enforcement and want to be safe.

Other systems are 911Assist, BlueLink or SafetyConnect. While it can seem a little intimidating at first, these systems do work. If you get lost or disoriented, they can alert your family and let them know you need help, as well as where to find you. It may feel odd to have someone talking to you in your car, but that same person could save your life.

 


 

    

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Best regards,
Roger

Guest Post: Key Car Driving Technologies to Assist with Seniors (part one)

I’d like to thank Craig Hammontree of Healthmax360.com for sharing this fascinating article, the remainder of which will appear here next Sunday.

Everyone wants their freedom, none more so than the people who raised us and still want active lifestyles as they get older. Just because someone is aging, that shouldn’t mean they can’t have their mobility. Plus, the automotive industry has heard the cry for better technologies in cars. Today’s cars are safer, more aware of their environments and take convenience and ease of movement into account more than ever before.

You may already have a great car caddy to help you get in and out of a deep, soft seat, but how about knowing what’s behind you or getting a warning about speed changes? These and more are all on the horizon for drivers of all ages, standing to benefit senior drivers immensely.

Help with changing lanes
There are some great accessories you can add to a new car that makes sure you don’t stray out of your lane as you drive, helps your car keep centered between hard-to-see markings and even does some minimal steering for you, though you have to keep your hands on the wheel.

Many cities don’t take driving safety for those with poor vision into account as lines fade on the street or rain falls. This new technology steps in to keep you safe as you go along at night or in a storm. While it hasn’t been perfected yet and some versions rely on a camera to keep you centered, it’s worth considering. Staying centered in your lane will prevent accidents and minor fender benders and help everyone in the car feel that much safer.

Smarter headlights
This technology you can put in your car will make you wonder how you ever drove without it. Newer, more aware headlights are the next step in driver safety and help ensure that as the sun goes down, your lights go up to make everything clearer and safer for you and everyone else on the road. Some lights are even designed to move their beams around as the road changes and have special settings for curves and hills. Once you have them, you will never go back to manual.

Better brakes
You may have already heard about Autonomous Emergency Braking or AEB, as it’s something that many car manufacturers have committed to putting in all their new models. Essentially, the brakes help your car know when it’s about to have a collision and stops the car for the driver.

If your reaction time has slowed or if you just want the reassurance of knowing your car can help you out when danger is on the road, these brakes are a must.

A wake-up call
Many of us get relaxed as we drive, but some of us get far too relaxed. A drowsy driver alert system is designed to monitor the blinking patterns of the person at the wheel through a camera or take into account a lot of swerving or drifting. The Drowsy Driver Alert System kicks on and either wakes the driver up with sounds, vibrations or suggestions to the driver that it’s time to take a break.

Sleeping behind the wheel is extremely dangerous and one of the leading causes of accidents. If you know you tend to nod off as you drive, this could be a great addition to your vehicle. 

That’s the end of part one. How about leaving a comment to thank Mr. Hammontree for his willingness to guest post with this article. I don’t know about any of you, but as a seventy-year-old driver, I find this information to be greatly encouraging.

 


 

    

Links you might be interested in:

I’ll be back again on Sunday. If you’d like to receive my posts by email, go to “Follow Blog via Email” at the upper right.

Best regards,
Roger