As the number of pedestrian fatalities in 2018 reached their highest level in 30 years, Denso – a mobility supplier with North American headquarters in Southfield – says it’s developing new technologies and strengthening initiatives that improve pedestrian and overall community safety.
“Since our founding 70 years ago, safety has always been top of mind at Denso,” says Roger Berg, vice president of North America research and development for Denso. “It is not enough to provide high-quality mobility products and services – the safety of drivers, passengers, and corresponding community members is also paramount to the success of effective transportation. Whether you’re driving or walking down the street, the automotive industry has a responsibility to make travel safe and reliable for all. As a mobility leader, we take that responsibility seriously.”
Denso’s efforts to increase road and pedestrian safety include:
- A $1.42 million investment in Denso’s first smart mobility ecosystem, which includes partnerships with a coalition of municipal, state, business and academic partners in Dublin, Ohio. In Dublin, Denso is using blockchain technology to gather previously untapped roadway data, which is vital to increasing road and pedestrian safety.
- Development of a new standard vision sensor that can detect pedestrians, cyclists, objects, and other road users for improved night driving safety. The sensor allows vehicles to automatically brake when objects are identified, reducing the risk of accidents. Denso released this technology in global markets in 2018.
- Sponsorship and distribution of 10,000 bike safety booklets and a partnership with Safe Kids Worldwide that provides young adults with comprehensive road safety toolkits, among other activities. As a result, the League of Michigan Bicyclists (LMB) named Denso a Business Champion of the Year for promoting cyclist safety throughout Michigan.
- Creation of advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS), from brake control systems to environment recognition technologies. Denso created the world’s first two-dimensional light detection and ranging (LIDAR), a device used in collision avoidance systems and which enables automated driving. The company also released a retrofittable driver status monitor, a product that detects drowsy or distracted driving in commercial vehicles and voices alerts to prevent distracted driving, a leading cause of accidents and pedestrian fatalities.