Mass. Reacts: NTSB Proposes Speeding Prevention Tech In Car Manufacturing

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QUINCY, Mass. (WBZ NewsRadio) — Frequent speeders may be interested to know that the National Transportation Safety Board has proposed to have new speeding prevention technology be required in new car manufacturing, an idea that some residents in the Greater Boston Area are not so certain of.

According to the NTSB, the technology is called Intelligent Speed Adaptation, or ISA, and different versions would allow for the car to make decisions or push notifications after "comparing a vehicle’s global positioning system (GPS) location against a database of posted speed limits and using onboard cameras to recognize speed limit signs."

The installed technology could come in three separate forms:

  • Open ISA: A solely notification system that pushes alerts to the driver when it detects the speed limit has been exceeded— giving the driver the responsibility to slow down.
  • Half-Open ISA: A system that makes it more difficult for a driver to accelerate when the speed limit has already been exceeded— though it's not impossible to still drive faster than the limit.
  • Closed ISA: Takes the decision-making process for the driver to speed out of the equation by automatically limiting the speed at which the vehicle can travel at— in this form the driver will never be allowed to exceed the speed limit.

Open ISA forms have already been implemented in a number of car models and third-party applications that notify the driver when they're driving too fast.

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WBZ's Jim MacKay spoke to a few people in Quincy who weren't too keen on the idea of Half-Open or Closed ISA systems, which would take partial or total control over speeding capabilities.

"It feels kind of intrusive and invasive," said Lauren of Braintree.

"I think from a regulatory standpoint it might be overstepping some bounds," said Jamal of Quincy.

Though not everyone was against the idea of people taking their foot off the gas when needed.

"Slowing things down I'm not opposed to— by ten miles per hour [over the limit] that might be kind of pushing it," one resident named Eileen said.

Another resident, Melinda, says her son is an Uber driver who frequently commutes roads in the Greater Boston Area. "He's riding these streets all day and night, and that worries me when people aren't driving safely," she said.

In terms of implementation, European officials are making it required for all new cars to be manufactured with ISA systems made within the European Union this year. In the United States, ISA systems are only a recommendation and a proposal from the NTSB.

WBZ's Jim MacKay (@JimMacKayOnAir) reports.

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