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Ford, Vanderbilt Study: Use Adaptive Cruise Control to Ease Stress in Fourth of July Traffic

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Ford traffic study Vanderbilt University

AAA is anticipating record traffic on roadways this coming Fourth of July, which means that you can likely expect heavy traffic and maybe even a headache when you set out this week for your destination. One of the more frustrating forms of traffic is the phantom traffic jam, wherein congestion forms seemingly from nothing and resolves just as suddenly with too much time lost.

Ford and Vanderbilt University this past week sought to demonstrate how adaptive cruise control technology can prevent this kind of traffic jam:

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Adaptive cruise control is available on 71 percent of all Ford vehicles offered in the United States. It will be offered as standard equipment as part of Ford Co-Pilot360, a suite of driver-assist technology that will debut on the 2019 Ford Fusion and Ford Edge. In one trial, the use of ACC only slowed the furthest car back by 5 mph as opposed to leading to a standstill.

“A fun Fourth of July family road trip can quickly become irritating when traffic slows to a crawl — especially once you learn there was no reason for the gridlock,” said Michael Kane, supervisor, Ford Co-Pilot360 Technology. “We encourage Ford owners who have adaptive cruise control to use it during their summer travels in the hope this smart technology today can be that first step to help ease commutes.”

According to Daniel Work, a civil engineering professor at Vanderbilt, traffic jams cost American drivers as much as 41 hours in time lost idling and $1,400 in gas burned and wear and tear every year.

The lesson here: if you have ACC, use it this Independence Day.

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