Cooley On Cars
Smarter driver: Drowsy-driving techBrian Cooley takes a look at new technology from car makers that can help detect when you're sleepy.
[MUSIC] New methodology from the AAA foundation for Traffic Safety shows 21% of fatal car crashes have drowsiness as a fault in their estimation. A full 33% of drivers age 19-24 admit driving drowsy. At least in the last month. That's the highest demographic. And 28% of American drivers overall admit to it. Drowsy driver alert systems use a variety of sensors and cameras to monitor your driving behavior. [MUSIC] Drowsiness detection [UNKNOWN] arrived in model year 2008 with Volvo's Driver Alert Control. It monitors the car operator's input, to deduce when the driver's drowsy. Mercedes, Ford and others followed with similar systems that are now the most popular type of drowsy detection technology. Toyota and Lexus use a less common eye detection system, with infrared cameras mounted on the steering column aimed toward the driver's face. The cameras recognize your face by measuring where your eyelids are. Seeing Machines is developing a full face-tracking technology for passenger cars, that would build on systems it already makes for trucks, train, and mining equipment. Fujitsu is starting production on what they call the feelism device, that combines a band around the driver's neck,. And a sensor clipped to the driver's earlobe, where it senses pulse and through that can predict drowsiness and then use sound or vibration to wake you up. At the Biometrics Institute of Valencia in Spain, they're developing the Harken. System that uses sensors in the seat cover and seatbelt to monitor pulse and respiration, which is then computed into an indicator of drowsiness. And going forward there is even development of drowsy detection and alert in future smart watches. It pays to double check how you feel when you are driving. And if the answer is drowsy you don't need a cup of coffee. You need some rest. [MUSIC] More realities of modern driving revealed now at C/Net On Cars.com Click on smarter driver.