Smart drive alert system might be compulsory to reduce road accidents: Federation head

Authorities last week put the issue of the installation of smart drive alert systems into all vehicles on the table during a workshop titled "Traffic Safety and Road Transportation in Ankara," Sabah newspaper reported on Sept. 17.

The Turkish Bus Federation (TOF) head Mustafa Yıldırım was quoted by the newspaper as saying that this alarm system is utilized in the U.S. and Europe and prevents accidents by 70 percent, as it detects signs of driver fatigue or drowsiness, lane changing without signaling, excessive speed and too much proximity to nearby vehicles.

Yıldırım said the federation had suggested to the Interior Ministry during last week's workshop for this system to initially be used in commercial vehicles, especially public transportation vehicles, in the first stage of introducing the system in Turkey. "The ministry welcomed the suggestion. If the use of the system becomes compulsory by law, 3.5 million commercial vehicles will install this system," Yıldırım said.

Yıldırım said the cost of the system was about 3,000 Turkish Liras ($868,000) for one vehicle and the federation was currently holding meetings with insurance companies in regards to its financing. 

"Insurance companies cannot prevent traffic accidents by increasing compulsory insurance premiums.

 There needs to be a system that will prevent traffic accidents. We have conveyed the issue to the insurance companies. They are looking into the costs," he said.

The general secretary of the insurance association of Turkey, Mehmet Akif Eroğlu, reportedly said the insurance sector found the smart drive alert system agreeable, but insurance companies could not cover its costs on their own. 

"It is not possible for us to cover the costs, but we...

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