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Tesla is teaming up with a Texas company for smarter emergency lights

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Tesla is teaming up with another American company to install smarter hazard warning lights in its cars.

According to Texas-based Emergency Safety Solutions (ESS), Tesla will implement its proprietary Hazard Enhanced Location Protocol (HELP) software, which aims to improve the visibility of broken-down vehicles and reduce related deaths.

ESS says Tesla will be the first manufacturer to adopt HELP technology. The partnership is described as a “global agreement,” but the technology will first be rolled out in North America with an over-the-air software update.

The HELP system uses existing vehicle hardware and software to make impaired vehicles more visible during an incident and increase the time available for other drivers to respond, which we hope will reduce fatalities.

It is designed to improve the current hazard warning system through a two-pronged approach called Lighting Alerts and Digital Alerts.

The lighting alerts consist of “highly visible emergency-based lighting signals” – faster, attention-grabbing hazard flashes – that automatically deploy in events such as an airbag deployment or a tire blowout.

Camera iconDelivered credit: CarExpert

Dr Ronald Gibbons, an academic who tested the technology, said: “Hazard lights with a higher flash frequency are much more effective than standard hazard lights… Drivers noticed the lights earlier, giving them more time to slow down and in most cases to cross strip”.

Digital alerts alert nearby drivers to use GPS mapping apps to be careful, provided their cars have the necessary connected features.

According to ESS, road crashes involving people with disabilities injure or kill about 15,000 people a year in the United States.

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Camera iconDelivered credit: CarExpert
Not supplied
Camera iconDelivered credit: CarExpert

Closer to home, the Australian Government’s Road Injuries Report 2021 shows that 29 per cent of road deaths in 2021 occurred on national or state highways – although it is less clear how many involved stationary vehicles.

“Tesla is a leader in creating early innovations in passenger cars and is leading the way by implementing HELP technology in potentially millions of Tesla vehicles worldwide,” said Tom Metzger, CEO of ESS.

Mr Metzger said the partnership was a “monumental step in efforts to tackle the vexing safety issue of collisions with disabled and vulnerable vehicles”.

The Tesla Model Y was recently awarded a five-star ANCAP rating, and the Model 3, Australia’s best-selling electric car, achieved the same high results.

https://www.perthnow.com.au/lifestyle/motoring/tesla-teams-with-texas-company-for-smarter-hazard-lights-c-8566385

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