1994-03-01

Chained Information Systems (An Aid to Prevent Rear-End Collisions) 940905

The societal costs of motor vehicle crashes in the United States exceed $137 billion annually. The death toll from these crashes is near 40,000, and the total injured is near 3 million.
Rear-end accidents comprise 23 percent of these crashes. Significant reductions of rear-end motor vehicle crashes can be realized by providing drivers with useful and timely warnings.
The reaction time of drivers responding to dangerous situations averages one-half of a second. When the response to a situation travels back through a line of traffic, such as the response when a lead motorist brakes, these half seconds add up significantly.
This paper proposes an early warning information system which utilizes linear traffic formations to send brake status through lines of traffic. The brake status information is sent rearward electronically.
A chained information system is described which is based upon a linear traffic model in which human reaction time is largely eliminated. The result of the application of this system will be a substantial reduction in accident costs and a substantial increase in lives saved.

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