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Test site for anti-crash technology named in Michigan

The United States government has named Michigan International Speedway as one of the six locations where drivers will test and assess technologies that could help them to avoid being involved in a car accident.

The speedway will host the three-day "Connected Vehicle Drive Clinic" in 2011, which will host around 100 motorists as they drive special cars containing cutting edge safety technology. Each participant will be paid for each day of the event. They will drive on a test course equipped with traffic signals designed to emulate streets of a city.

A spokesperson for the U.S. Department of Transportation said the testing clinics are not likely to create any permanent jobs, but the driving courses at the speedway and other nearby convenient conveniences led the department to select the site.

The clinic will test cars and roadways equipped with sensors and devices that give drivers advance warning of potential accidents, helping them to handle such problems as traffic congestion, blind spots, lane changing and maintaining safe distances from other vehicles. Researchers will ride along with the drivers to record their responses to the new technology and ask them questions after the tests.

Other testing clinics are scheduled in Francisco, Orlando, Blackburg and several other locations. All the findings will be analyzed by the DOT's Connected Vehicle Safety Pilot program and shared with leading auto manufacturers like General Motors, Honda, Ford, Toyota, Hyundai-Kia, Volkswagen, Mercedes-Benz, and Nissan. The DOT also hopes to use the data to determine new safety regulations for automakers.

Source: Detroit Free Press "Michigan International Speedway chosen as test site for anti-crash vehicle technology" Greg Gardner, July 8, 2011

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