ESC Saves Lives and Money
A report by the US Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has found that the use of ESC systems can reduce the risk of fatal crashes by 34 per cent, the risk of single-vehicle fatal crashes by 56 per cent and thereby save thousands of lives a year.
The IIHS concluded that, “widespread application of ESC in the vehicle fleet can be expected to afford a significant safety benefit because the technology reduces single vehicle crashes by 41 per cent.”
Recently other findings published by the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration also gave ESC a strong endorsement preliminarily finding that SUVs equipped with stability control systems had a remarkable 63 per cent fewer fatal crashes and 67 per cent fewer single vehicle crashes overall. The NHTSA findings tracked with studies in Germany, Sweden and Japan, and simulations at NHTSA’s National Advanced Driving Simulator in Iowa.
In response to the reports William Kozyra, president and CEO, Continental Teves commented: “ESC, available today, is now “must have” safety equipment for today’s driving environment because it can help prevent thousands of injuries and deaths. Consumers should put ESC at the top of their safety features list when shopping for a new vehicle.”
Mr Kozrya’s comments follow the news that Continental will use a standardised name for its ESP technology. At a meeting of the Automotive Press Association, Joe Gaus, Continental vice president, told journalists that the technology which it previously marketed as Electronic Stability Program, will henceforth be called ESC, in line with a Society of Automotive Engineers recommendation in July for the industry to standardise the use of “ESC” as common language.
In addition to the life-saving benefits of ESC, this new data suggests that this technology more than pays for itself in the saving of societal costs, which NHTSA estimates to be $230 billion annually. According to NHTSA, driver error is the cause of the majority of crashes. ESC and other available safety technology to help drivers avoid crashes altogether is an exciting new chapter in the national resolve to make motor vehicle travel even safer and more enjoyable.
Continental projects that it will supply more than 1.2 million ESC units to manufacturers in North America in 2005, an increase of more than 70 per cent over expected deliveries for 2004.