If you've ever taken a road trip, you know that rural driving can pose some issues due to the many animals that might be encounter on winding forested roads. Driving in more remote locations requires special attention and there have been many technologies created to try and make it safer for both animals and humans. Various car manufacturers have added technologies to try and show where animals are and third-party gadgets can be bought in auto stores, but nothing is quite as extensive as the recently developed Elk Sensor.
The Elk Sensor: Simple, Yet Effective
The Elk Sensor is exactly that - an invention from a Swedish man named Benjamin Eliasson who worked to try and make something that could help to sense large animals near roadsides. In the areas where large animals are common but there are no fences to stop the animals from getting onto the road, specialized sensors are set up to alert drivers when there is a large animal nearby. The forewarning gives drivers the chance to slow down and be extra cautious with a blinking signal, similar to what you see at flashing yellow lights and four way lights; an obvious and easy-to-understand indicator that an animal may enter the roadway.
As you likely know, most drivers won't see large animals like elk until they're almost on top of them in the middle of the road and, by that point, it's too late. The Elk Sensor is meant to help prevent such things from happening, and thus prevents a significant volume of accidents. Due to an abundance of forested area and rural roads, Sweden is known for having a high number of animal-related accidents throughout the year, and anything that can help to reduce that number has been willingly embraced.
Solving a Growing Problem Among Drivers in Sweden
There were over 27,000 accidents throughout the country of Sweden last year that were caused by large animals, and in August alone there were 300 accidents involving elk - many of these accidents can be severely injurious to a car's occupants. Preventing these incidents is certainly a cause worth pursuing. The Elk Sensor technology may eventually be expanded to include smaller animals as well, but further developments would need to be made to make the sensor accurate in regards to smaller targets.
The Elk Sensor system has been granted awards from the Driver Safety Department in Sweden, and the country plans to have the systems installed on rural roads throughout. While the Elk Sensor will certainly ensure extra safety, it's still important to be a responsible driver when visiting foreign nations; brush up on local laws and driving rules in Sweden and you'll be well-prepared for the adventure of a lifetime!
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