Car Safety and Regulatory Devices

In the Safety & Regulatory Devices section you'll find tools and technology intended to keep drivers and passengers safe, from car seats and airbags to red-light camera technology.


In the next few years, side curtain airbags will be a key safety feature in most new cars. How do they complement traditional airbags to keep you safe on the road?

German auto supplier Bosch developed the first electronic stability control system in the mid-1990s. Decades later, most cars and SUVs are equipped with electronic stability control as standard equipment.

An electronic brake force distribution system determines the exact amount of brake force required at each wheel during any braking situation. But how does the system precisely modulate the brake force?

Your car or truck could be equipped with hill-start control and you probably wouldn't even know it was there. But don't underestimate the importance of this system that operates in the background.

When you watch car commercials, you always hear automakers tout their vehicles' safety features. However, they rarely mention the most important one of all -- the glass that keeps you inside.

If you've ever slammed on the brakes to barely avoid a collision, you know full well how important brake assist can be. Brake assist helps stop a vehicle faster to avoid crashes.

It's a technology that's been well-tested in the aviation industry for nearly two decades. So, why are automakers reluctant to bring drive-by-wire technology to the showroom floor -- or are they?

Multi-function steering wheels are improving automotive safety simply by placing the most commonly used electronic controls in a very convenient place -- right at the driver's fingertips.

A pre-collision detection system sounds like something out of a science fiction film; however, these systems have actually been around for several years. So, what kinds of systems are available today?

Car testing is more than strapping a dummy to the driver's seat and releasing the brake. Engineers conduct myriad secret tests to assess everything from engine performance to design.

Computerized stability systems for your car won't magically steer you clear of an out-of-control vehicle, but they can keep an eye on road conditions and vehicle performance.

Have you ever wondered what happens to your old seatbelt? They can't be recycled in cars for safety reasons, but they often find new lives as clothing, furniture and even artwork.

Airbags are everywhere. You can find them in the front and on both sides of your car. Vehicles now have tubular airbags, knee airbags and even outside airbags to protect pedestrians. How much safety is too much?

They are crucial to personal safety and very expensive to replace. Should it be a surprise that airbags have replaced car stereos as the most popular target for auto thieves?

Airbags have saved more than 27,000 lives since 1990, yet they still have detractors because of their danger to children. Occupant Classification Systems detect exactly who -- or what -- is sitting in your passenger seat.

Our car safety image gallery shows you car safety features, crash testing, and other technology intended to keep drivers and passengers safe. And some features you may not have heard about.

There's always going to be some risk involved with automobile travel. Crash testing helps remove some of that risk. However, given the availability of modern computer modeling, is it still necessary to destroy actual vehicles?

A lot of engineering goes into crash test dummies. But as advanced as crash test dummies are, they can't tell researchers everything that happens in a crash. That's where human crash test dummies come in.

Did you know that parts of your car are built with special structures designed to be damaged, crumpled, crushed and broken? These components redistribute the force of an impact before it reaches the vehicle's passengers.

What if your car came with a guarantee that you'd never die while driving or riding in it? It sounds far-fetched, but one company is promising such a car by 2020.

Strong coffee? That's the old-fashioned way to stay awake behind the wheel. Future generations of cars will be equipped with high-tech features to rouse sleepy drivers.

The oil in a car is a necessity that keeps things lubricated and running smooth. But what happens if you never change it? And how long can you really go?

Speedometers have been around since the early 1900s when cars began to grow in popularity and (literally) outpace the horse-drawn carriage.

Traffic tickets are the bane of some motorists, but they exist to enforce driving laws and to encourage safe driving. Learn about traffic tickets including what's on a ticket what happens during a traffic stop and how to fight a ticket.

Car seats: Get fast facts on car seat safety and easy-to-read explanations on harnesses the LATCH system and what to look for when buying car seats.