New tech targets tailgaters on UK highways

New tech targets tailgaters on UK highways

Technology has been at the forefront of road safety for years and now it’s being used to tackle a well-known and serious problem: tailgating. In an on-going trial in the Northampton area, cameras are identifying vehicles that are driving to close to others and action is being taken. So what exactly is going on, and how might it affect your future journeys with daily car hire or van hire

Why is tailgating dangerous?

Tailgating is the term for what’s happening when a vehicle is driven too close to the vehicle in front.

This type of driving behaviour is particularly dangerous because it means drivers will be unable to stop or avoid a collision if something unexpected happens. If the vehicle in front is forced to slow or stop, the second driver needs to leave enough distance to have enough time to stop or move around it. If the second driver is tailgating however, they’ll have no time to take evasive action and a collision occurs.­ 

If a collision does occur, multiple people can be affected. As well as the occupants of both vehicles involved, nearby drivers, passengers, and riders may be caught up in the incident. Whether you’re travelling in your own vehicle, leasing a vehicle as part of a daily van hire agreement, or a passenger in someone else’s car, your safety is at risk when tailgating occurs. 

How does the new tech work?

Roadside cameras have been installed along a stretch of the M1, a major motorway connecting London to Leeds. In the same way that speed cameras can spot vehicles that are travelling too fast, these tailgating cameras can identify when a driver is travelling too close to the vehicle in front. It then snaps a picture of the offending vehicle, including its registration number, so that the driver can be traced.­ 

Currently, drivers caught tailgating by this new tech are receiving a warning letter in the post. However, tailgating remains a form of careless driving in the UK, which means it’s classed as illegal dangerous driving. Drivers are commonly fined £100 and/or receive three points on their licence if they are caught tailgating, so it’s possible that the punishments will increase if the new technology is introduced across the country. 

Will it make the roads safer?

According to Highways England, tailgating is a factor in 1 in 8 casualties on UK highways, with 87% of drivers saying they’ve witnessed or experienced it. It is hoped, therefore, that the introduction of tailgating cameras will substan­ti­ally reduce collisions on the roads and make them safer. 

Of course, this depends on whether drivers modify their behaviour if they’re caught tailgating. Not every instance is tailgating necessarily involves aggressive intentions, so there is a good chance that they’ll do so. Furthermore, if fines and or penalty points are issued on the basis of this tech, incidents of tailgating may drop drastically. 

If so, this will be welcome news for all road users - whether you’re driving your own car, travelling as a passenger, using daily car hire, or riding a motorbike, tailgating puts everyone at risk. And if you are on the lookout for the best prices on daily van hire or daily car hire, you’re in exactly the right place. Here at Intack Self Drive we take care offer the very best prices, so you can always rely on us to get you from A to B, however much stuff or however many people you’ve got to move. 

And if you’re looking for vans on a slightly more long term basis, our Flexi Hire service guarantees you the very best prices on longer term hires. If you’ve got any questions or need anything clarified, our friendly team is only a phone call away - feel free to give us a ring on 01254 57811!

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