Driver assistance technology shouldn’t be fully trusted, AAA says

Some of the automated driving assistance features on cars aren't safe enough to be completely trusted on their own, AAA suggests in new research.

Your new car may come with some form of active driving assistance, but the American Automobile Association is warning drivers not to let that lull you into “a false sense of security.”

In a new report, AAA researchers found instances where that automation technology struggled to keep vehicles in their lane, and they also found that systems would often disengage with little notice.

“Active driving assistance systems may lull drivers into a false sense of security, allowing them to direct their attention away from driving,” AAA spokesman Mark Jenkins said. “When using these systems, it’s critical that drivers remain focused on the road, in case you need to intervene. Although these systems are designed to make the roads safer, they’re still in the early stages of development and are not consistent.”

The research found that the cameras these cars use to maintain lane position can struggle when lane markings are unclear or when the sun causes too much glare.

AAA concluded that adaptive cruise control functions performed well. But the vehicles experienced some other type of issue every 8 miles, on average, researchers said. Issues were also found when approaching disabled vehicles during closed-course testing.

AAA is calling on car companies to do further research on the automated systems before releasing them to market.

To see the full report, click here.