Over the past century, it goes without saying that auto safety has dramatically increased. In the 40s, cars had very few features. Today, we have cars that can detect other nearby vehicles and help guide us along our commute.
Here are a few ways that auto safety has revolutionized the American commute.
Cities Spend Less on Infrastructure
Thanks to the improvements provided by cars, cities are spending significantly less on infrastructure. Roads are nowhere near as expensive as they used to be, the traffic control systems help to navigate traffic safely, and the increased presence of law enforcement has significantly reduced accidents. Thanks to these improvements, people feel significantly safer on the road now than they did even just a decade ago.
Everyone’s Focused on Safety
It wasn’t a huge priority back in the day, but now people are demanding safety. When people buy a car, safety features are the first thing that they look for. When companies make the car, they’re constantly thinking of new ways to make their car secure, often investing in different materials and offering new features. In fact, there’s an entire government agency — the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration — that’s dedicated to ensuring that people are safe on the road.
People are More Willing to Commute
A few decades ago, people were less willing to commute. They often lived very close to work, wanting to spend as little time in their car as they could. Now, it’s common for people to commute half an hour or more to work. People feel safe and secure in their car and, because of this, they don’t really mind spending more time in their car. Modern conveniences such as iPods have made longer trips much more bearable, too.
Safety Features Make us Feel Secure
Whether you’re driving a luxury suv or a small compact car, OnStar has a presence in a lot of vehicles. Many people think that OnStar can only help in the event of a crash, but that’s not correct. In fact, they have a host of other services. You can use OnStar to assist you if your vehicle has been stolen; you can have them help guide you to your destination; and if you have an accident, it can provide automatic crash response and contact emergency services for you. While you’re driving, you almost feel like you have a guardian angel watching over you.
When you’re driving, you may find it a bit difficult to back up. No worries, there’s a safety feature for that now. Thanks to reverse backup sensors, you no longer have to worry as you back out of a space after a long day at the office. If an object is in your path, the sensors will sound an alarm. You don’t have to worry about them being built into the car; you can actually add them on yourself. It may run close to a hundred dollars, but it’s well worth the investment.
What This All Leads To
As mentioned earlier, driving during the middle of the 20th century wasn’t anything to get excited about. Cars were mostly featureless, and they weren’t very safe either. In fact, more than 50,000 people were killed each year in automobile accidents.
Thanks to improved safety features and a dedicated focus on safety, we now live in a society that can be infinitely more productive. People are more willing to commute to their jobs, and we’re no longer quite so limited by distance. We have a sprawling interstate system that people are willing to commute across, knowing that if their car doesn’t completely protect them, a backup system like OnStar will.
This has created an environment where we’re a lot more dependent on automobiles than other nations, but that’s fine — we’re able to get where we need to go quicker than anyone else, which ideally leads to more productivity.
Can you think of any other ways that auto safety has revolutionized the American commute? If so, leave a comment below and let us know!
By Annie Davis
Annie Davis is a freelance writer from Tampa, FL. Besides writing, her hobbies include kayaking, photography, and traveling. Annie can be reached at email@example.com.