Emerging technology cannot solve all of safety problems. And in some instances it just creates new ones. But Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB) is one technology is that should improve far more than it complicates. Recently the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has introduced the new AEB standard. While it applies to the U.S., safety standards are essentially copied by Transport Canada and will equally affect the Canadian market.

In this example of a multi-vehicle collision on Hwy 403 near Paris Road near Brantford in April, 2023, the mixture of light and heavy vehicles with differing stopping capabilities makes driver reaction challenging, particularly when the view ahead is obstructed. Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB) could cause emergency braking actions to occur quicker resulting in the reduction of collision severity or collision avoidance altogether.

The following summary is taken from the the introduction of the new standard.

The standard applies to capabilities of avoiding impacts with other motor vehicles and pedestrians. Curiously, nothing appears to be mentioned about avoiding cyclists, although that may exist in the 110-page publication which has not be reviewed in detail at this time.