According to Traffic Safety Facts 2005 , singlevehicle crashes resulted in over 58% of all vehicular fatalities on the nation’s roadways during that year. Of these fatal crashes, almost 15,000 occurred either off of the roadway or on the shoulder. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has recognized that technologies such as electronic stability control and other emerging safety technologies can potentially reduce a great number of these fatal crashes.
One emerging technology that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration believes may have great potential to save lives is lane departure warning. These systems assist the driver by providing a warning (passive or active) that their vehicle is about to depart the road lane. The actual number of lives saved would depend upon the effectiveness of the lane departure warning system.
This paper will discuss both the past and present research that has been conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. It will give a general overview of the performance and potential safety benefits of the technology. Information on the type of sensors and performance testing to evaluate lane departure warning systems will be presented, including examples of them. Data from past field operational tests and test track research documenting system performance will be shown.