We all know that car manufacturers equip their vehicles with increasingly high-tech safety features, but sometimes there are simple solutions that no one has though of. One example is Honda's way of reducing the risk of accidents. What is it? Well, just small triangular markings on the sides of the windshield.
Two triangles, fixed slightly above the driver's line of sight, are arranged so they point toward each other from opposite sides of the windshield. According to Honda, their presence makes it easier for drivers to avoid accidental contact in tight situations, such as when passing another car or turning into a narrow alley.
Experiments conducted by Honda with several different models found that the triangles, which measure 4 to 5 millimetres, encouraged drivers subconsciously to stabilize their line of sight when making a left turn.
Honda analyzed data from more than 1,000 tests that monitored changes in drivers' line of sight when turning left into a three-meter-wide street.
The results showed that skilled drivers maintained a stable line of sight -- their eyes scanned horizontally only. Poor drivers tended to scan up and down as well as from right to left.
In vehicles with the triangular markings installed, however, even poor drivers maintained a stable line of sight, the company said.
Honda made these discoveries while studying ways to improve drivers' sense of vehicle width. The idea of stabilizing the line of sight was inspired by the once-common feature of rear-vision mirrors attached to the front of the hood, the company said.
Honda has applied for domestic and international patents on the triangles as accidental contact prevention devices.
[Source: Winnipeg Free Press Autos via TOV]