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Real-world effects of General Motors Forward Collision Alert and Front Automatic Braking Systems

Cicchino, Jessica B.
Insurance Institute for Highway Safety
September 2018

Objective: Forward collision warning and automatic emergency braking have been established as effective in reducing rear-end crashes. The objective of the current study was to examine the effectiveness of Forward Collision Alert and Front Automatic Braking, which are forward collision warning and automatic emergency braking systems from General Motors that have not been evaluated in prior IIHS research.
Method: Poisson regression was used to compare involvement rates in rear-end striking crashes of all severities, with any injuries, and with injuries in other vehicles (third-party injuries) between vehicles with Front Automatic Braking and Forward Collision Alert or with Forward Collision Alert alone and the same vehicle models where the optional systems were not purchased, controlling for other factors that have been previously shown by IIHS to affect crash risk.
Results: Vehicles equipped with Front Automatic Braking and Forward Collision Alert were involved in 43% fewer rear-end striking crashes of all severities, 64% fewer rear-end striking crashes with any injuries, and 68% fewer rear-end striking crashes with third-party injuries compared with the same vehicles without a front crash prevention system. Involvement rates in these crash types were 17%, 30%, and 32% lower, respectively, among vehicles with Forward Collision Alert alone than among the same vehicles without any system.
Conclusions: The effects of Front Automatic Braking and Forward Collision Alert features from General Motors are similar to what has been found with front crash prevention systems from other manufacturers. These findings add further evidence to suggest that many crashes will be prevented or reduced in severity when front crash prevention systems become more widespread in the vehicle fleet.