Volvo, which has a long reputation for the safety of its cars, adds three more new developments.

The three safety projects are: autonomous driving support, intersection support and animal detection and are part of the company’s goal that nobody will be killed or seriously injured in a Volvo car by 2020.

The autonomous driving support function takes control of the vehicle’s accelerating, braking and steering functions in traffic queues. Thanks to a camera and radar sensors, the vehicle will follow the one in front of it.

“This function has considerable scope for making the driver’s life easier,” said Volvo safety function developer Fredrik Lundholm. “However, it is always the driver who decides. He or she can take control at any time.”

Intersection support helps the driver prevent crashes caused by cars that run stop signs and red lights. The sensors assess the whole traffic scenario and the system automatically applies the brakes when an immediate danger is detected.

A recent study shows that almost 200 people are killed annually in the US in collisions with animals, in Sweden 23% of road deaths between 2003 and 2010 were caused by elks, and in 2010 almost 7,000 collisions with kangaroos took place in New South Wales. Volvo’s animal detection system reduces the car’s speed to less than 80km/h so that the car’s safety systems can work effectively. The systems currently recognizes animals such as elks, horses, stags and cattle.


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