How Self-Driving Vehicles Endanger Pedestrians: Part II

In the first part of our series on self-driving vehicles, we examined a few of the main factors that underlie pedestrian-related accidents. Now, we’ll take a closer look at the latest statistics in the interest of determining how these vehicles are already impacting those traveling on two feet. Pedestrian Deaths on the Rise For years, American automakers and drivers have consistently made design and purchasing decisions that benefit drivers and passengers while placing pedestrians at risk. As a result, deaths have declined dramatically for vehicle occupants, while pedestrian and cyclist fatalities have seen a dramatic upswing. Federal data suggests that…

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How Self-Driving Vehicles Endanger Pedestrians: Part I

Self-driving vehicles are poised to take over our roads in the near future. While preliminary research suggests that they will reduce accidents by removing human error from the equation, they remain far from perfect. Pedestrians, in particular, could be at risk as these vehicles become more prevalent. Below, we examine the many ways in which self-driving cars can prove dangerous: Poor Detection Detection issues often lie at the heart of self-driving accidents. Autonomous vehicles simply cannot respond appropriately to pedestrians if they are not detected quickly enough. Unfortunately, detection issues abound. Research from the Georgia Institute of Technology suggests that…

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What UBER Does to Protect Riders

Ridesharing is gaining in popularity every day, but many riders are wondering what exactly UBER is doing to protect them. With tales of women being sexually harassed or raped, drivers being rude or reckless, and other news stories across the nation, riders are becoming more and more wary of UBER. Here’s what UBER does to protect you as a rider. Insurance Coverage From the time you request an UBER to the time that you arrive at your destination, UBER covers the driver and all passengers with a $1 million policy. This insurance is in addition to the insurance that the…

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Electric Scooter Safety in the District

It’s nearly impossible to walk around the streets of DC today and not encounter people riding electric scooters. This relatively new addition to transportation has changed the way transit in the city operates. Here are some guidelines about safety practices around electric scooters, whether you’re riding one or you encounter them on a daily basis. New Technology, Old Problem Functionally, electric scooter safety is similar to bike safety. However, electric scooters are novel, easy to use, and widely accessible, which has opened up scooter use to many more casual commuters who might not apprecaite the risks associated with electric  Electric…

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American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Reminds Parents that Napping in Car Seats Can Result in Death

A recent recall of an inclined Fisher-Price crib, due to dozens of infant deaths, highlighted concerns over safe infant sleeping practices. The recall comes at a time when infant sleeping safety is already well-known in the pediatrics community, following the release of a long-term study published in Pediatrics that looked at infant mortality. The study found that most infant deaths in a seated position occurred in car seats where infants had been sleeping. Safest Sleeping Position for Infants? The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) states that the most safe sleeping position for infants is on their back using a firm,…

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Buying Used Tires Not Worth the Safety Risks

New sets of tires can be expensive, but purchasing used tires for their cost savings is not worth the risk. Although used tires are cheaper than new ones, opting to purchase used is not the same as making a similar decision when shopping for other expensive items. Hidden Risks of Used Tires While many consumers believe that finding a used tire with good tread depth implies it is safe to drive, there are many hidden factors in buying tires used. Tires degrade more quickly if they are driven for long periods of time while underinflated, overinflated, overloaded, or at high…

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Summer 2019 Metro Closures Highlight Traffic Dangers

This summer, Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA), is shutting down six Metro stations on the blue and yellow lines south of Ronald Reagan National Airport. These stations include Braddock Road, King Street-Old Town, Eisenhower Avenue, Huntington, Van Dorn Street, and Franconia-Springfield. The Washington Post estimates that 17,000 daily commuters are affected by these station closures. Increased Traffic Volume The displacement of passengers affected by the station closures will likely increase traffic in the District and surrounding areas over the summer, especially during rush hour. Commuters not affected by the station closures should still be aware that they might face denser…

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1 in 6 Ride-Sharing Vehicles Have Safety Recalls but Remain in Service

A recent Consumer Reports study looked at vehicle registration for ride-sharing companies in Seattle and New York, and found that 16.2% of vehicles in service had at least one or more active safety recalls. The total number of vehicles surveyed in the study with safety recalls was 15,175. One car in service in Seattle had over 5 different open safety recalls, including one for a defective Takata airbag. Overall, the percentage of recalled vehicles on the road for Lyft and Uber is actually lower than other car-hire services such as the traditional taxi industry. However, the scale and frequent use of…

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Gen Z Behind the Wheel: A Look at the Statistics, Dangers, and Opportunities

Move over millennials — a new generation is about to take over. Born in the late 90s and early 2000s, Gen Z holds a fiercely independent streak and a deep awareness of technology as it relates to personal branding. Although slow to take to the road compared to other generations, today’s young adults are beginning to adapt to the vehicular world. We’ve observed the following as they get behind the wheel: Lower Rates of Drunk Driving Today’s roads are safer because members of Gen Z know better than to drive while intoxicated — or at least, they’re willing to take…

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100 Deadliest Days for Driving Teens Begins Memorial Day

This Memorial Day weekend marks the beginning of a season where rates of car crash-related deaths among teens tragically rise. Dubbed ‘the 100 deadliest days’ by AAA, the time from Memorial Day until Labor Day sees a 14% increase in teenage auto accident related deaths when compared to other periods of time. This meant that an average of 1,022 deaths occurred from auto collisions which included teens between 2010 and 2014 during this season. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. A study from AAA using the same data found that , This problem is caused primarily by distracted teens with insufficient…

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