High-Tech Vehicle Safety Systems
Blind Spot Detection Systems

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Blind Spot Detection Systems

Even with properly adjusted side mirrors, an overtaking vehicle may enter a region - a "blind spot" - outside of the driver's view to the side and rear of the vehicle. Blind spot detection systems automatically identify such objects and will issue a warning.


How do they work?

Blind spot detection systems use either radar or rear-looking video cameras to detect vehicles in the driver's blind spot. The systems only flag moving vehicles; they do not react to fixed objects such as traffic signs at the roadside that the subject vehicle is passing.

Detectors are located on both sides of the vehicle to facilitate safe lane change manoeuvres. The system only identifies objects in close proximity, to the vehicle. Generally, the system will illuminate a warning light, often located on the appropriate side mirror, to advise the driver of the presence of the adjacent vehicle. Some systems vibrate the steering wheel if the driver attempts to initiate an unsafe passing manoeuvre.

Systems with video cameras as detectors use computer-based image processing to identify objects of interest in the field of view and issue appropriate warnings.

Some systems feature powered side mirrors that, when a turn signal is activated, swivel outwards to provide a view outside of the regular field of view.

Blind Spot Detection Vehicles in the driver of the green car's blind spot are detected
and the driver alerted that it is not safe to change lanes


Useful links

Blind Spot Detection Systems (Visiocorp)

Blind Spot Detection / Lane Change Assist (Continental Automotive)

LaneFX Interactive Demo


On-line Video Clips

Side Blind Spot Detection : DigInfo

pro.pilot Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (Continental Automotive)

2008 Cadillac STS/ In-Depth: Tech Features (cars.com)

Seeing Past the Blind Spot (MyRide.com)

On-line video clips


Quick Facts

  • Radar or video camera systems detect overtaking vehicles in the driver's blind spot

  • The systems activate warning lights or vibrate the steering wheel

  • Fixed objects, such as traffic signs, do not trigger alerts

  • Some systems will automatically change the field of view of the side mirror




The Canadian Association of Road Safety Professionals http://www.carsp.ca
L'Association canadienne des professionnels de la sécurité routière Page updated/Page mise à jour : 05-Feb-09