How 4activeSystems can help prevent roadkill
Vast number of animal-vehicle crashes
In 2019/2020, a staggering 80.668 animals were killed, and 249 people were injured, due to animal-vehicle crashes in Austria.1 According to the ADAC, every year over 270.000 animals are killed on German roads.2 However, not only Europe deals with this issue. According to an analysis by State Farm Insurance, drivers struck an estimated 2.1 million animals on U.S. roadways between July 2020 and June 2021. Which means a disturbing increase of 7.2% over the previous twelve months.3 These numbers are the reason why we are increasingly dealing with this topic – 4activeSystems prevent roadkills.
Figures published by the German ADAC show, every 2 minutes an animal-vehicle crash occurs, due to deer and boars suddenly appearing on the road. Especially in the months of April through May and October through December, the risk of roadkill incidents is exceedingly high.4
Magnitude of roadkill
“We estimate that, in about 50% of collisions with animals, the cars cannot be driven away”. This says Fraser Schilling, Ph.D., director of the UC Davis Road Ecology Center, University of California Davis.5 Moreover, accidents with large animals such as roe and deer are notably the most dangerous for occupants of the car. Due to the nature of the deer and the circumstances of the accident, passive safety systems, such as airbags, do not protect occupants from when the deer comes through the windshield.
Statistics from all over the world clearly show, that the local form of deer/elk represent the highest number of reported animal-vehicle crashes. In addition, central Europe also has a vast number of incidents with wild boar.6
In order to keep roadkill incidents low, the animals need to be identified as such by cars beforehand. There is a lot of pedestrian safety testing already, so why not use the same technology and use it for animal safety?
“Don’t assume that a vehicle with automatic emergency braking or pedestrian detection will automatically stop when there is an animal in the road unless the animal is approximately the size of the smallest human being that could be in the road., advises Schilling.” (cf. Walford Lynn, Autofutures, July 13th, 2020)
Finding a solution
An attempt to a solution could be testing with our 4activeAN dummies. The animal targets 4activeAN are the outcome of a long-term research project and represent a variety of realistic animal targets (roe deer, white tail deer, moose, wild boar, etc.). Each target is extremely lightweight and consists of a soft structure to prevent damage on the VUT. Still the physical properties, like radar reflection, depict the real animals. Different options, like an additional synchronized articulation, or heated versions, for thermal cameras, are available. Combined with 4activeSB or the driverless robotic platform 4activeFB-small it is the best and most efficient ADAS testing solution.
1 Kleine Zeitung, online edition, October 7th 2021, 9:58am, https://www.kleinezeitung.at/oesterreich/6044033/Mehr-Achtsamkeit-noetig_Mehr-als-80000-Wildunfaelle-jaehrlich-auf, accessed 14.11.2022, 09:00am2 ADAC Presse, online edition, October 29th 2021, https://presse.adac.de/meldungen/adac-se/versicherungen-finanzdienste/zeitumstellung-erhoehte-gefahr-von-wildunfaellen.html, accessed 14.11.2022, 09:37am3 LaChance, Dave (2022), In: Repair Driven News, May 17th 2022, https://www.repairerdrivennews.com/2022/05/17/collisions-with-animals-rose-7-2-during-the-pandemic-state-farm-analysis-says/, accessed 14.11.2022, 11:16am4 ADAC Presse, online edition, October 29th 2021, https://presse.adac.de/meldungen/adac-se/versicherungen-finanzdienste/zeitumstellung-erhoehte-gefahr-von-wildunfaellen.html, accessed 14.11.2022, 09:37am5 Walford, Lynn (2021), In: Autofutures, July 13th 2021, https://www.autofutures.tv/topics/cars–n–wildlife—how-technology-can-help-prevent-animal-collisions—roadkill/s/a09f4687-f99e-432f-bf2a-a59df20702c4, accessed 14.11.2022, 10:39am6 https://www.viltolycka.se/statistik/, http://www.deercollisions.co.uk/pages/background.html, https://www.statistik.at/fileadmin/shared/QM/Standarddokumentationen/RW/std_r_jagdstatistik_2008-2009_-_2014-2015.pdf, accessed 17.11.2022, 19:39