Automatic emergency braking reduces crashes, according to two new studies.
The first study of the Partnership for Analytics Research for Traffic Safety, or PARTS, a partnership of carmakers and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, found that vehicles with such braking systems and with forward collision warning resulted in 49% fewer front-to-rear crashes compared to vehicles without either system. Rear crashes with injuries were reduced by 53%.
“These emerging technologies can substantially reduce the number of crashes and improve safety outcomes,” said Tim Czapp, industry co-chairman of the PARTS Governance Board and a senior manager at Stellantis. “Demonstrating industry’s proactive commitment, AEB is approaching standard deployment and with real-world effectiveness, is helping mitigate injuries and lives lost.”
Meanwhile, a study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety shows automatic emergency braking cuts rear-end crash rates for pickup trucks by 43%. The finding was based on crashes reported to police in 25 states from 2017 to 2020, calculating the rate pickups rear-ended other vehicles, per registered vehicle year.
But pickups are less likely to be equipped with AEB than other vehicles, IIHS found.
“These numbers confirm that AEB is reducing crashes for pickups, just as it is for cars , SUVs and large trucks,” said study author Jessica Cicchino, IIHS vice president of research.
In the PARTS study, carmakers supplied data for about 47 million vehicles of 2015 through 2020 model years. The NHTSA also furnished data for more than 12 million crashes reported to police in 13 states.
The study also determined that AEB performs well in all weather, road and lighting conditions.
Automatic braking can stop a vehicle to avoid an imminent wreck or slow its speed to reduce the severity of a crash.
Yet an AAA study released earlier this year found that AEB doesn’t always work as it should and that its testing requirements need updating for more realistic speeds and scenarios.