Have you experienced falling asleep while driving?
A vibrating steering wheel might be the perfect solution for drivers at risk of dozing off behind the wheel.
ARM Holdings, a British microchip giant based in Cambridge, came up with the idea of ensuring driver’s safety by designing a shaking steering wheel that would warn sleepy or distracted motorists to keep their eyes on the road.
The innovation comes with a cockpit camera that can detect the driver’s expression. To check if the driver is drowsy, the camera placed in rear-view mirror would scan the driver’s blink rate, head position, and eye alignment.
Once abnormal eye movement is detected, the steering wheel will shake and the alarm will sound.
According to ARM vice president Richard York, manufacturers are already using sensors to help prevent front-end collisions. Commonly seen in modern cars, these sensors can do a multitude of preventive measures including measuring the distance between vehicles as well as detecting if the car is out of the lane.
Speaking to The Times, York said: “The evidence is that almost all accidents are caused by drivers not paying attention.”
“Electronics can play a big role in looking into the vehicle to keep an eye on the driver and make sure he’s doing what he’s supposed to be doing, driving,” he added.
As for the mass deployment of the device, ARM Holdings believes that it will come in a few years.
In the UK, poor concentration is the main culprit for road accidents. In-car gadgets such as GPS devices and hands-free phones have been blamed by experts for the four percent increase in road injuries and deaths. In fact, road accidents are considered the major cause of deaths among individuals aged 15 and 29.