What Every Student in Automotive School Should Know About Driving Monitoring Systems

It’s a safety system of the future — and a fascinating one, at that. Driving monitoring systems use a camera to recognize the driver behind the wheel, and particularly to keep an eye on their alertness. 

These systems work to ensure the driver is awake and focused at all times, and prevent any possible accidents caused by lack of attentiveness or drowsiness. Given how distracted driving can result in numerous deaths, this is a technology that could not only improve safety for drivers and those surrounding them, but save lives in the process.

Here are some facts worth knowing about driving monitoring systems.

How Do Driving Monitoring Systems Work?

A driving monitoring system will typically contain a built-in camera looking toward the driver’s face to monitor any sense of distraction or lack of alertness while driving. More specifically, it performs functions such as reminding the driver to keep their eyes focused on the road, automatically restoring the driver’s preferences upon recognizing their face, and alerting them when it detects any deviation of their focus. 

The systems typically use technology such as LED detectors and infrared sensor-equipped cameras to send these alerts. They can sometimes even work in collaboration with a car’s driving assistance system to inform drivers of oncoming dangers on the road. However, drivers must also remember that these systems are not substitutes for their own alertness on the road.

Driving monitoring systems will send alerts when lack of focus is detected

What Happens When the Driver is Recognized as Losing Focus?

Since the monitoring system is built to recognize the driver’s head position and eye movements, they are able to detect signs that they are losing their alertness or focus while driving.

If the monitoring system identifies that the driver may be drowsy or inattentive, it will alert them, typically with a sound alarm. It may also inform them to keep their eyes on the road, or simply tell them they need to take a break. A graphic of a coffee cup may show up on the dashboard alongside a “take a break” message when this happens. 

Those with auto careers may also encounter systems that send alerts when there are noticeable changes in a driver’s behaviour, such as acceleration, steering, and the use of turn signals.

If a driver is losing focus, an alert may show up telling them to take a break

The Development of Driving Monitoring Systems Explained for Automotive School Students

Although driving monitoring systems are still a relatively new technology, students in automotive school will be pleased to learn that a number of major manufacturers are already taking steps to introduce these systems in their vehicles. 

After Lexus became the first to offer driving monitoring systems in their models, companies like Cadillac, Subaru and Volvo would later incorporate them into their vehicles. The development of driving monitoring systems also continues to evolve, especially when it comes to advances in facial recognition technology. Not only will these systems detect the driver’s activity and any possible drowsiness, they will be able to change conditions within the car — climate, infotainment, etc. — based simply on the driver’s eye movements. 

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