US transport body wants speed-limiting tech installed in cars

SAN JOSE: What goes in Vegas won’t stay in Vegas, if the US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has its way with the country’s drivers.

After investigating a fatal 2022 car crash in Las Vegas, the NTSB has said it wants manufacturers to install speed-limiting gadgets and has asked official road management bodies to make the same call.

So-called intelligent speed assistance technology (ISA) "uses a car’s GPS location compared with a database of posted speed limits and its onboard cameras to help ensure safe and legal speeds," according to the NTSB.

Following research showing the potential of ISA to dramatically reduce road deaths, as well as noise pollution, the European Union in 2022 began enforcing a form of ISA that warns speeding drivers.

However US officials are considering going even further. One option, the board said, could be to deploy electronics that prevent a car from going above a certain speed, possibly 160kph.

The NTSB mentioned other "passive" and "active" ISA versions, the former merely warning a driver that he or she is speeding, and the latter requiring "mechanisms that make it more difficult, but not impossible, to increase the speed of a vehicle above the posted speed limit."

"What we lack is the collective will to act on NTSB safety recommendations," said Jennifer Homendy, chair of the board, which said the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and car manufacturers should at least mandate so-called passive in-vehicle warnings.

Critics of the proposals say that speed is being conflated with poor driving or badly-maintained cars, and say there are dangers if automatic speed blocks prevent necessary overtaking manoeuvres.
Autos News