Just the Facts:
- Wireless collision-avoidance technology is expected to be road-tested soon in Los Angeles.
- An app developed in Italy would transmit warning of a crash to approaching vehicles.
- Toyota is reportedly working on hardware to implement similar car-to-car communication.
LOS ANGELES — Road testing of a collision-avoidance system based on wireless Internet-based communication between automobiles is expected to begin in the near future.
According to the Web site Gizmag.com, Toyota is working to produce hardware to implement a computer application developed at the University of Bologna in Italy that enables vehicles to "talk" to each other and provide instant notification when a crash has occurred.
In computer simulations, the technology has been shown to reduce chain-reaction multicar pileups by 40 percent, the online magazine reported.
Three years ago, the European Commission reserved part of the radio frequency spectrum for smart-vehicle communications systems.
Communication among vehicles would be triggered by a crash sensor detecting an accident in one or more vehicles. The app in the wrecked vehicle would send a coded message to approaching cars within 984 to 3,281 feet of the crash site.
The signal would be relayed to other vehicles further down the line, but the technology would identify one vehicle to pass along the signal to others rather than having every vehicle forward the communication, thus creating exponential consumption of bandwidth.
The magazine article did not specify whether the message would result in an alarm to alert the driver or initiate collision-avoidance measures not requiring driver action.