In November 2019, 14-year-old Alaina Gessler won a $25,000 prize for her brilliant and innovative solution for eliminating blind spots on vehicles. Alaina was determined to solve this problem after she noticed how her mother was fearful when driving their SUV, primarily due to the large pillar on the corner of the cab that blocked a significant portion of her mother’s view, creating a blind spot. Though she was unable to drive herself, Alaina understood the hazards associated with blind spots and took it upon herself to solve the problem.
Alaina knew that the corner post of the cab provides vehicle strength, important in a rollover, so decided to “get rid of it without getting rid of it” by designing a camera and projector system that simultaneously records what’s behind the pillar and projects that image onto it, making it effectively invisible to the driver.
This simple design was inexpensive to execute and could easily be incorporated into the design of modern vehicles, significantly reducing the risk of an accident and potentially saving countless lives. Alaina’s blind spot prevention design earned her the first-place spot in the national Society for Science and Public’s Broadcom MASTERS (Math, Applied Science, Technology and Engineering for Rising Stars) competition.
The big question is – will automobile manufacturers take this brilliant innovation and incorporate it into the design of new vehicles?
The Dangers of Blind Spots
At NordstrandBlack PC, we strongly believe that innovations like Miss Gassler’s and others should be taken seriously to resolve the blind spot risk once and for all. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported that an estimated 840,000 crashes in the US are caused each year due to blind spots – a significant number when you consider the solution exists and could be implemented immediately.
We feel that automobile manufacturers have a responsibility to provide the highest level of safety to vehicle operators and their passengers, as a single mishap can lead to an accident that leaves innocent people seriously or fatally injured.
The Crashworthiness of Today’s Vehicles
Vehicles today are designed to reduce the possibility of severe injury to the driver and passengers. A vehicle’s crashworthiness has a lot to do with the safety features used to prevent accidents, as well as the structural integrity and safety features in the vehicle. These features are designed to protect the drivers and passengers if a crash does occur, as well as reduce the number of accidents. Some of the key points in determining the crashworthiness of a vehicle include:
- Blindspot assistance
- Child safety
- Rollover prevention
- Front-end and rear-end structural design to prevent side, front, rear, or roof collapse
Any design flaw or failure of one of the crucial safety features can lead to catastrophic or fatal injuries in an accident. If you or a loved one was injured in an accident, you may have the right to pursue full compensation for your losses – financial, emotional, and personal. If an injury was sustained due to a design flaw or malfunction in the safety systems of your vehicle, it is imperative that you enlist the help of an experienced auto accident attorney to evaluate the facts in your case. If your injuries or the loss of life of a loved one was the result of a vehicle design flaw, faulty system, or vehicle part, your lawyer can initiate a legal action to seek compensation.