See and be seen

See and be seen

When the clocks go back this weekend, many commutes and school runs will be plunged into darkness, resulting in reduced visibility and increased risk of accidents.

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (ROSPA), the UK’s leading safety charity, claims 40% of road accidents occur at night when vision is reduced.

Ford has a suite of technologies available on its cars which help drivers to monitor the road ahead and detect potential hazards sooner. Advances in lighting technology also mean that Ford cars now illuminate the road ahead brighter and more efficiently, while also making themselves more visible to other road users.

“Driving at night presents additional challenges, especially at this time of year when drivers may not be used to driving with their lights on,” says Mauro Assis, Ford Engineer. “It’s harder to judge distances, reaction times are slowed too, and there’s the risk of being blinded by oncoming traffic.”

Tech explained

When visibility is reduced or when dusk sets in, all Ford vehicles are equipped with high quality headlamps to ensure drivers can travel safely and also be clearly seen by others.

Ford also offers the option of ultra-bright bi-xenon High Intensity Discharge (HID) headlamps on certain models, while highly efficient, lower energy use LED technology makes Ford vehicles even easier to spot for both other motorists and pedestrians.

Additionally Ford has a range of available technologies that can assist drivers over the winter months when driving in the darkness is more commonplace. These include:

  • Adaptive Front Lighting System – the direction of the car’s halogen light beams automatically changes when the steering wheel is turned, almost doubling the visible distance around bends. This results in reduced stress and fatigue while driving at nigh.
  • Auto-headlights – sense when the outside light falls below a set level, such as dusk or driving into tunnels, and automatically switches on the headlights, helping drivers keep concentration firmly on the road ahead
  • Auto High Beam Control – detects on-coming vehicles and automatically switches to dipped beam, before switching back to high beam once it detects the vehicle has passed

It’s not just drivers who benefit from Ford’s technology when the evenings become darker either. Clever ‘puddle lights’ fitted to the door mirrors of some Ford models ensure drivers and their passengers don’t need to step out of a vehicle into puddles, mud or worse.

Similarly, the dangers of walking through poorly lit areas when you park at night are reduced by smart ‘follow-me-home’ headlights. These headlights stay on for a few seconds after the engine has been turned off, which can also be useful to individual drivers who may worry about getting safely from the car to their front door in the evenings.

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