WASHINGTON – All those chimes and bings coming from your cellphone. A car alarm in the distance. Someone honk a horn. Many safety experts wonder whether drivers are becoming desensitized to alarms.
Many cars come equipped to alert drivers when they drift into another lane or are fast-approaching the fender in front of them. But drivers may be tuning those, too.
Continental, an automative supplier, has developed a way a car can watch its driver, using infrared lights that zone in on the driver’s eye movement, reports Wired.com.
If the driver is looking away from the road and approaching an accident, the car will make a series of beeping noises and flash bright red lights inside the car.
The lights run along the windows and dashboard of the car and flash to get an immediate reaction from the driver.
“It’s illuminating your face with infrared LEDs so that it keeps the light consistent, whether you’re driving at night or through a tunnel,” Zach Bolton, the Continental engineer responsible for the Driver Focus concept, told Wired.
“It’s taking in the shape of the eye sockets, nose and chin to see whether a driver is looking straight ahead at the road or to the left or the right or down – somewhere other than the direction he needs to look,” he told the magazine.
It may be two years until this technology is approved to be on the road, but it’s already being tested.