Do you know that over 1.2 million people die in road accidents every year? And what’s more surprising is that over 50 million get badly injured due to road collisions. According to many studies, these crashes occur due to driving fatigue, distractions, not following safety practices, and breaking traffic restrictions. However, a good percentage of overall accidents happen due to a vehicle’s blind spots.
Many new driving assistance technologies are available in the market. Their sole purpose is to help drivers navigate through highways and busy roads without collisions. But only a few are as cost-effective and practically helpful as BSM in cars. If you are inexperienced, you might not know about this system. So, continue reading to find out all about it!
Deep Dive into BSM in Cars
Blind spots have been dangerous since the invention of automobiles. They are present in every vehicle, including cars, trucks, buses, motorbikes, etc. These areas are almost invisible to the driver, even from the side-view mirrors. It is because of a car’s complex build, obstructing the view.
To tackle this problem, you have blind spot monitors or BSM in cars. This system became popular after Volvo implemented it in 2001. Now the question is, what is BSM in a car, and what does it do? Simply put, it is a driving assistance device that monitors a vehicle’s surroundings.
The basic premise of BSM is to track a car’s blind spots and notify the driver if a vehicle gets close. This way, the driver will stay updated on its surroundings and can make well-versed decisions.
Basic Workflow of BSM in Cars
Are you confused about how BSM in cars detects other nearby vehicles in blind spots? Let us simplify its workflow by breaking it down into three simple steps.
1. Role of Sensors
Sensors are the heavy lifters of BSM systems in cars. They are radar-based devices that emit millimeter waves when the system activates. These radar waves allow the sensors to detect nearby moving objects.
2. Accurate Detection
The sensors ensure to catch accurate information about the oncoming car. They detect a vehicle’s distance and speed to identify it as a potential threat. The system will not notify the driver if it is at a safe distance. It only alerts the driver if the risks are higher, especially when turning or changing lanes.
3. LED Lights & Speakers
LED lights are integral components of BSM in cars. They flash to notify the driver if a vehicle enters their blind spots. Most systems also have speakers with a BSM car light. They produce a chime or beeping sound as an alerting mechanism. This way, the driver can make the right decision at the right time.
Studies on How BSM in Cars Can Prevent Road Accidents
How can BSM in cars make driving safer? Let’s look at some real-world studies to build a case.
Firstly, over 800,000 blind spot accidents occur every year. The worst part is that 300 of these collisions have fatal results or immediate death.
This number is alarming if you consider that yearly accidents are estimated at 1.2 million. That means most crashes occur in a vehicle’s blind spots. Another study concludes that 10% of road collisions happen during lane-changing. And that is also related to the dangers of blind spots in a vehicle.
But there’s no need to panic. BSM in cars has proven to be an efficient solution against these crashes. According to a study by IIHS (Insurance Institute for Highway Safety), blind spot monitors have reduced lane-changing accidents by 14%. The system also showed progress in minimizing a collision’s impact by 23%.
These stats prove the dangers of blind spots and the unmatched value of BSM. This system ensures maximum protection for a driver, their vehicle, and others on the road. Many studies have also concluded that using driving assistance technology improves driving awareness. That is why equipping a BSM system in cars is highly recommended.
Pros & Cons Of BSM in Cars
Having BSM in cars can be very beneficial. While the system has some limitations, it is a cost-effective solution against increasing road accidents. Here are its pros and cons discussed in detail:
1. Ensured Protection
A BSM system offers additional protection by providing extra eyes in the danger zones. This way, drivers can get updates on the vehicles entering and exiting their blind spots.
2. Unmatched Precision
The accuracy of BSM detection is unmatched, thanks to its robust sensors. It calculates an oncoming vehicle’s speed and distance, identifying whether it is a potential threat or not.
3. Reasonable Cost
The BSM in cars cost is very reasonable if you consider its benefits. It is a life-saving device that can be found factory-installed in vehicles or aftermarket systems.
4. Ease Of Use
It doesn’t require any additional training or education from the driver. You can read the manual and understand it’s working pretty clearly.
5. No Stopping It
The system is practically invulnerable to outdoor elements like dust, debris, dirt, and fog. Moreover, due to its radar-based sensors, it is a water-proof and weather-resistant device. They work seamlessly in extreme conditions, such as rain and snow.
6. Minimal Maintenance
You won’t need to care for the system regularly. Its sensors are resistant to most outdoor conditions. Thus, they don’t need frequent maintenance by a professional.
7. Additional Functions
Modern BSM systems come with extra features, like RCTA. What is RCTA in a car? It is a Rear Cross Traffic Alert system that tracks a vehicle’s blind spots. Many other functions are also available in BSM, like braking assist and collision warning. You can read them in the product’s manual.
The only drawback of BSM in cars is its limitations. The system doesn’t detect stationary objects, like parked vehicles, poles, guard rails, and street lights. Some models might also skip on bicycles and longboards.
Another thing to note is that the system has a specific detection range and speed. Vehicles traveling beyond or under these two specified factors will not get detected. But you can tackle this disadvantage by choosing the right system with effective area coverage, speed limit, and accuracy.
Experts recommend not relying entirely on a BSM system as it is only a driving assistance tool. You should always combine this device with your safety practices for the best outcomes.
Step-by-Step Installation of BSM in Cars
The installation of BSM in cars is pretty straightforward. You might not need professional assistance for it. However, the installation method can vary from system to system.
Let’s go through the universal method of installing a blind spot monitor!
Step 1: Place the Sensors
First, you have to place the sensors in the back of your car. You can remove the rear bumper to install these devices. The method can vary depending on the number of sensors. You have to place them on either side or both, following the system’s instructions.
Step 2: Set up the LED Lights
The buzzers and LED lights are generally connected. Thus, you have to install them at the same spot. Where to place them? Follow the points below:
- If your system only has LED lights, you can install them on the side-view mirror or A-pillar.
- If your system has buzzers with LED lights, you can only install them on the A-pillar.
Step 3: Hide the Wiring
Most modern BSM systems are wireless, as they are more convenient. If your system has no cables, skip this step.
It is important to note that most standard aftermarket blind spot monitors have wires. But don’t worry because they will not ruin your car interior’s aesthetics. You can hide these cables behind and under the seats. Make sure to run them through efficiently to keep your car organized.
Step 4: Test the System
After the installation, testing is highly recommended. It can tell whether your system works or not before you head to a busy road or highway. You can test your BSM by driving on smaller roads with less traffic. If the system doesn’t work, consult a professional or the product’s manufacturer.
3 Things to Know About Installation Of BSM in Cars
While installation of BSM in cars is easy, you should consider some things. Here are all of them:
- Make sure to read the product’s manual. It might have some specific instructions that are unique in the system.
- Contact a professional if you don’t understand the installation method. It is a better way since all drivers are not experienced in handling these systems.
- Read your product’s specifications to get a better understanding of its components.
Understanding the dangers of a vehicle’s blind spots is the first step toward its solution. Technology has become a norm in the driving industry in the modern era. And for good reasons, too! These devices have increased the driving awareness of experienced and inexperienced drivers. And BSM in cars is no exception, considering its life-saving benefits, easy installation, and proven effectiveness.
This cost-effective system can help you tackle fatal road scenarios. You can become a more responsive and aware driver using blind spot monitors.