AAA research: European headlight technology could lower driving fatalities at night

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(KMVT/KSVT) — A European headlight technology is lighting up a conversation about lowering driving deaths in the U.S.

AAA conducted research and compared the European technology to American headlights and found that it could improve lightning by 86 percent.

The technology is known as Adaptive Driving Beam, the innovation works by allowing high and low beams to operate at the same time. It has sensors that would lower the intensity of the light.

In a statement released, AAA Idaho public affairs director Matthew Conde said ADB is expensive but could have a major impact and decrease driving fatalities during nighttime.

“The technology is still in its infancy, and it’s fairly expensive, but it’s exciting to think that this could have a major impact on the number of nighttime driving accidents and animal strikes that we see in Idaho each year,” said Conde.

Below you'll find figures AAA Idaho included in the press release about headlight research.

Two-thirds of U.S. adults who drive at night do not regularly use their high beams.

In a comparison of low beam headlight types, none were effective above 52 mph when used on roadways without additional overhead lighting. In other words, vehicles have the ability to "outrun" the lighting and visibility that their headlights produce.

Deteriorated headlamps produce just 22 percent of the light output that new headlights provide. Only 1 in 5 Americans have performed any kind of lens restoration on their vehicle.

KMVT spoke with a few motorists who said they don't have many concerns about their headlights when driving at night.

"Driving back to Alaska and haven't had any problems with any of headlights, they're fine during the nighttime," said Robert Eneix.

"They're excellent with this Ford pick up..the headlights are," said a Jerome resident.

AAA Idaho said the ADB is available in Europe and Canada and that The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is considering making changes to the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards that would allow ADB technology to be available in the U.S. in the future.

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