This technology could prevent nearly one-third of all fatal crashes and reduce the risk of rolling over by as much as 80 percent. The benefits are found in crashes involving one vehicle and more than one.

Cars on wet road

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An extension of antilock brake technology, electronic stability control (ESC) is designed to help drivers retain control of their vehicles during high-speed maneuvers or on slippery
roads.  A previous Institute study found significant effects of ESC in reducing fatal single-vehicle crash risk. Using data from an additional year of crashes and a larger set of vehicle models, the researchers have updated the 2004 results, finding that ESC reduces fatal multiple-vehicle crash risk by 32 percent.

This research confirms that ESC reduces the risk of all single-vehicle crashes by more than 40 percent—fatal ones by 56 percent. The researchers estimate that if all vehicles were equipped with ESC, as many as 10,000 fatal crashes could be avoided each year.

 

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