Safety Tech Drives New Repair Practice
- Newly issued code provides best practice guide to the recalibration of vital car safety technology
- Motorists also encouraged to take responsibility in ensuring they stay safe on the road
A new voluntary code of practice for glazing technicians will ensure that the safety of motorists remains top priority during the replacement, or refit, of vehicle windscreens.
Industry experts including the likes of Thatcham Research, National Windscreens and Nationwide Crash Repair Centres, have this week issued the ‘ADAS Glazing Code of Practice’, which is aimed at ensuring an effective and consistent approach to the recalibration of vital ADAS (Advanced Driver Assistance Systems) technology.
ADAS sensors and cameras are located towards the top of a vehicle’s front screen, between the glass and the rear view mirror, with the camera lens usually clearly visible from outside the vehicle. The technology is designed to work in combination to provide an accurate view of the vehicle’s immediate surroundings. This enables a range of safety and comfort features such as Autonomous Emergency Braking or Adaptive Cruise Control.
Safety experts unanimously agree that ADAS-enabled technology is fundamental to preventing crashes and saving lives; however, without a robust process for recalibration, system performance could be adversely affected.
The new code of practice provides those who have responsibility for windscreen replacement with a clear framework for ensuring that the safety of customers with vehicles fitted with ADAS sensors is not compromised in any way. If for any reason the repairer is unable to recalibrate at the time of carrying out the work, motorists need to have clear information as to what their options are and ensure they follow through, avoiding the potentially dangerous situation of ADAS technology not functioning correctly.
“ADAS systems have become an integral feature on modern cars, with motorists increasingly putting their trust in the additional layer of safety that this technology provides. This code of practice is a recognition by the industry that, whilst ADAS technology is helping make vehicles that much safer, it is also going to put a much greater emphasis on ensuring that safety levels remain unaffected following a repair,” said Andrew Miller, Chief Technology Officer at Thatcham Research.
Windscreen-mounted ADAS technology is currently fitted to approximately 6% of vehicles on the road and it’s thought that this figure could be more like 40% by the year 2020. Motorists will increasingly need to be aware of the technology fitted to their own vehicles and are encouraged to ask questions and take their own steps to ensure that the technology has been handled in the right way.
“The industry is proactively putting a best practice framework in place, which should provide great confidence to motorists that their safety is at the very heart of this initiative,” commented Miller.
“However, motorists themselves do have a responsibility in ensuring they remain safe on the road and they are encouraged to ask questions following any repair to the windscreen to satisfy themselves that the technology on their car is being properly handled. If in any doubt, it’s imperative that they consult their own dealer for confirmation.”
The ‘ADAS Glazing Code of Practice’ code can be accessed here http://www.thatcham.org/files/pdf/Consumer/ADAS-CoP.pdf
ADAS Repair Group Members
The ‘ADAS Repair Group’ comprises cross-industry expertise from UK insurance, crash repair, technology and solutions manufacturers and automotive glazing companies, namely: Thatcham Research, Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders SMMT, Belron International, NSG Pilkington Auto, Insurer Engineers Technical Committee (Thatcham), National Windscreens, Hella Gutmann Solutions, Robert Bosch Ltd, Auto Body Professionals ABP, Auto Glazing Academy and Nationwide Crash Repair Centres NCRC.
Iain Wallace, Communications Executive at Thatcham Research
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Paul Chadderton, Communications Director at Market Engineering
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About Thatcham Research
Thatcham Research is the independent voice of automotive safety & repair, advising motorists, insurers and vehicle manufacturers to help reduce accident frequency, severity and costs and to realise the vision of ‘Safer cars, fewer crashes’.
As well as its world leading crash and track research, Thatcham tests and accredits crash repair parts, vehicle repair technicians, and a number of other products and services within the collision repair industry for insurers, motor manufacturers, equipment manufacturers and suppliers.
A founder member of the international Research Council for Automobile Repairs (RCAR), Thatcham has also been a member of the European New Car Assessment Programme (Euro NCAP) since 2004.