John Yoswick

John YoswickJohn Yoswick is a freelance automotive writer based in Portland, Oregon, who has been writing about the collision industry since 1988. He is the editor of the weekly CRASH Network (for a free 4-week trial subscription, visit www.CrashNetwork.com).

He can be contacted at john@crashnetwork.com 

Monday, 27 June 2016 12:16

Retro News: July 1996, 2001, 2006, 2011

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10 years ago in the collision repair industry (July 2006)

During the 1980s and 1990s, association and seminar leaders frequently pointed to changes in vehicle technology that were putting a dent in the collision repair market. Daytime running lights, the third brake light and anti-lock braking systems, they’d say, were among the key factors pulling accident frequency down.

The industry then got a sort of reprieve for a number of years in terms of crash-prevention efforts. Automakers turned their focus largely to vehicle safety and occupant protection, including the explosive growth of airbag systems. The Internet boom also had the OEMs and eletronics firms focused on passenger information and entertainment systems.

The bad news for the industry is that that is about to change – and change rather dramatically. Federal auto safety regulators – seeking to reverse a rise in highway deaths – are shifting their focus from mandates that help occupants survive crashes to technology that will help drivers avoid accidents altogether.

Dr. Jeffrey Runge, administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, said in a speech before the Society of Automotive Engineers that bolstering vehicle "crashworthiness" represents the past, and that "crash avoidance" is the future.

“I’d like to begin to focus on the event before the crash,” Runge said. "We may have plateaued out in terms of crashworthiness.”

– as reported in Autobody News, July 2016.