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Automotive Safety Technologies Contribute to Decline in Highway Deaths.

WASHINGTON -- The Association of Global Automakers (Global Automakers) is encouraged by the Department of Transportation's announcement today that traffic deaths on U.S. highways are at their lowest level in over 60 years.

"The record breaking decline in traffic fatalities is proof that the billions of dollars automakers are investing into advanced safety features on their vehicles is helping save lives," said Michael J. Stanton, president and CEO of Global Automakers. "Our members continue to research and develop the next generation of safety technologies and introduce innovations such as lane-departure warning and forward collision mitigation systems."

Recent research by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has indicated that vehicles equipped with Electronic Stability Control (ESC), a safety feature designed to assist the driver in maintaining control of the vehicle, has a smaller likelihood of being involved in a crash than a similar vehicle without ESC. Global Automakers' member companies have been proactive in manufacturing safer vehicles by offering this feature on many of their vehicles well in advance of recent regulations requiring ESC on all new vehicles. Automakers commitment to improving vehicle safety is also reflected in the high ratings received by Global Automakers' members' vehicles in both in the U.S.-New Car Assessment Program and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety consumer crash testing programs.

"While technology has saved countless lives, we must acknowledge the impact of safe driving behavior and are pleased that NHTSA is taking additional steps to focus on the issue of driver distraction," said Stanton. "Global Automakers supports state legislation for primary enforcement bans on the use of hand-held devices for texting and phone calls by drivers while driving and we are hopeful that NHTSA's ongoing research will provide sufficient data to influence future policy decisions."

The Association of Global Automakers represents international motor vehicle manufacturers, original equipment suppliers, and other automotive-related trade associations. Our members' market share of both U.S. sales and production is 40 percent and growing. We work with industry leaders, legislators, and regulators to create the kind of public policy that improves vehicle safety, encourages technological innovation, and protects our planet. Our goal is to foster a competitive environment in which more vehicles are designed and built to enhance Americans' quality of life. For more information, visit www.globalautomakers.org.
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Dec 8, 2011
Words:435
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