THE BLOG

"V to V" Will Make Driving Safer

02/06/2014 11:26 am ET | Updated Apr 08, 2014

Vehicle-to-vehicle technology (V to V) is being tested by Ford which becomes the first major American carmaker to try and get cars and trucks to "talk" to each other.

Transportation Secretary, Anthony Foxx recently announced a favorable attitude to the development of V to V, which is the next step in car communication before we see truly autonomous cars which can "drive themselves" as a regular feature on roadways.

We're already seeing the beginnings of V to V in cars which use advanced radar systems to sense, for instance, when a car in front of ours is rapidly stopping or "see" something behind us while we're backing and automatically apply our car's brakes.

V to V makes a jump over these systems and allows vehicles to recognize each other on the road, at speed, and make predictions about what other cars might do. For instance, when our car comes to an intersection, stops at a stop sign and then begins to roll through the intersection, another car coming in the opposing lanes, at a speed which "tells" our car that it might be running the stop sign on the opposite side of the street, our car will give a verbal warning telling us about the speeding car and, if necessary, stop or turn our car to get it out of the way of the speeder.

Representatives of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration told CBS News that as radar systems become more advanced, V to V should be a regular feature on vehicles within the next decade.

"Autonomous cars," or cars which can virtually drive themselves, are still another two decades or so away, but V to V is a big step from where we are now to cars and trucks which can truly operate in a driverless situation.