Automated Lane Keeping Systems (ALKS) Could Take Control Of Cars Soon
The Department For Transport says Automatic Lane Keeping Assistants or ALKS for short could be the given the green light to take control of cars by the end of 2021.
Unlike some of the lane warning and lane assist technologies currently in vehicles that offer warnings or intervention/assistance in an emergency to prevent a collision, the driver can fully hand over the vehicles control/steering to an ALKS system.
An ALKS system would be able to control the car on major UK roads in a single lane up to speeds of 37mph and it would work with other semi-autonomous driving technology like front radar/camera systems, adaptive cruise control and automated braking to adjust speed, steering and braking.
The ALKS System does pose some serious questions though and the UK government is still researching if/when the technology would be viable and allowed on UK roads.
85% of road accidents are due to human error and while logic says smart technology could drastically reduce the number of accidents in these instances, there are some sceptics of how effective it would be.
Steve Gooding, from the RAC Foundation, said people are “invariably the weak link” when it comes to safe driving, but he also warned there are “challenges” when the journey involves transferring control of the vehicle between technology and the driver.
The question does arise if/when the driver takes back control, will they be alert and ready to do so. Would an ALKS System make the driver more complacent and slower to take back control of the vehicle if they need to do so in an emergency?