NMA E-Newsletter #297: V2V—Technology Marches Forward

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has a vision for vehicle-to-vehicle communications and the role the technology will play in highway safety. In addition to issuing a lengthy report on the topic last month (DOT HS 812 014, Vehicle-to-Vehicle Communications: Readiness of V2V Technology for Application), the federal agency is currently soliciting public comments about its proposal to create a national standard that would require V2V communications capability on all passenger cars and light trucks in the near future. The goal is to use V2V technology as the basis for a new platform of vehicle-based safety applications such as intersection movement assist and left turn assist that could significantly reduce the number of crashes.

At the heart of V2V technology is a dedicated short-range communications capability, one that would send a basic safety message between vehicles to warn drivers of an impending collision or even take automated action such as applying the brakes if the driver doesn’t respond quickly enough. The message would include information such as vehicle speed, GPS position, vehicle heading and a verifying message ID. NHTSA estimates that V2V hardware will cost approximately $350 per vehicle in 2020.

We will be reviewing NHTSA’s request for comments about development of a federal motor vehicle safety standard for V2V communications and urge those of you interested in this technology to do the same. The deadline for feedback to NHTSA through the advance notice of proposed rulemaking process is October 20, 2014. 

The agency will also issue a Privacy Impact Assessment in the coming months with more detail on potential privacy risks. That assessment will come with its own request for public comments, an area we surely will be weighing in on as discussions about the implementation of V2V advance. 

Stay tuned to the NMA e-newsletter and blog for more information as it develops. Improvements in vehicular safety designs and applications are welcomed as long as drivers’ rights aren’t encroached upon or put at further risk.

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