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Vehicle-to-vehicle communication first step in improved roadway safety

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The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced on Monday that it plans to mandate that all new cars be equipped with a vehicle-to-vehicle communication system that could prevent most accidents.

The Transportation agency will develop and oversee the standards and regulations for the systems. Car manufacturers, however, would be responsible for installing the radio communication system, GPS sensors and needed software into the vehicles.

Using short-range radio signals, cars could trade messages, basically engaging in a two-way conversation that would allow them to talk to each other. This communication between vehicle could head off about 80% of impending crashes, by warning and alerting the driver, or even taking automatic preventive measures (braking or steering adjustments).

While many modern cars can already do this by using sensors to detect objects around the vehicle., the NHTSA's suggested system would allow for cars to relay information to each other about speed, direction, traffic patterns, and roadway conditions.

This system would allow the car to have a 360 degree view of everything surrounding it for up to 300 yards. The vehicle could be monitoring trucks in front of it, cars behind it, getting updates on traffic and rainy conditions, while keeping an eye on what is going through the intersection.

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