Ford announces new road safety tool to prevent crashes with cyclists and pedestrians

Ford introduces new 'smart mirrors' for their vans

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The new tool will offer drivers a high-definition screen which displays a panoramic rear view ensuring drivers do not miss any other cars, pedestrians or cyclists. The tool offers road users a field of view which is twice the width of a traditional rear-view mirror to boost safety.

Ford says the technology will help drivers be more aware of their surroundings when approaching roundabouts, changing lanes or merging into side streets.

An automatic brightness control will ensure ‘optimum visibility” both in daylight and at night and in a variety of weather conditions.

The new tool is set to be introduced as an added extra for Ford Transit and Transit Custom vans.

Owen Gregory, Director of Commercial Vehicle Aftersales at Ford said the new tool would increase driver confidence.

He said: “Providing our drivers with maximum visibility – especially in urban areas where there is so much to look out for – increases their confidence and is a key part of making journeys safer for them, and for other road users as well.”

The camera will be installed into the rear doors of the van to ensure drivers get a full view of what’s behind them.

The new mirror will cost around £675 and available to any transit with windowless rear doors.

Any Ford dealer will be able to fit the new part as long as the vehicle is fully compatible.

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The manufacturer claims the new mirror could be beneficial for delivery drivers making frequent drop-offs in the city centre.

They said installing the system could increase the amount of time commercial vehicles are working on the road.

This is because the number of costly accident damage repairs through simple shunts would dramatically fall.

Ford said owners of vehicles with windowless load spaces tend to rely on the vans side mirrors for visibility. 

However, the size of the van and the position of its mirror can often make it difficult to spot road users and cyclists.

Data from the European Commission shows vulnerable road users accounted for 70 percent of road accident fatalities in Europe’s urban areas in 2019.

The new mirror is just a part of widespread technological advancements aimed at improving road safety.

Models from a range of popular manufacturers such as SEAT, Ford and Mercedes can now read road signs and adjust car speeds based on road limits.

Speed limiters will also need to be installed on road cars from next year as part of an EU safety ruling.

If drivers fail to slow down their car after being warned the model will automatically intervene.

The European Transport Safety Council said speed limiters could reduce collisions by around 30 percent.

They also expect deaths to reduce by around 20 percent while insurance prices are also expected to fall as drivers make fewer claims.

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