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ACM Opinion

Driving By the Numbers


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In the wake of the U.S. Congressional hearings on the Toyota recalls, we have heard various proposals for countering unintended acceleration in automobiles.

Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood recently said the U.S. federal government may recommend that carmakers install "smart pedals" that give brakes priority when both brake and accelerator pedals are pressed simultaneously. Meanwhile, Toyota has said that, in contested acceleration accidents, it will give regulators access codes to data recorders—essentially, onboard black boxes being installed in some new cars.

But sometimes the solution to a safety problem is simply more transparency. Indeed, there is a relatively easy solution that would help identify problems before they affect thousands of cars, or kill and injure dozens of people: allow drivers and carmakers real-time access to the data that’s already being monitored.

From The New York Times
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