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New Safety Feature to Address Vehicle Rollaway Incidents

New Safety Feature to Address Vehicle Rollaway Incidents

"Return-to-Park" feature uses safety-enabled technology to reduce likelihood of driver exiting an unsecured vehicle

Author: FleetLogik/Friday, December 9, 2016/Categories: Featured, In the News

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Vehicle rollaways can occur when drivers exit the vehicle with the engine is running and the transmission not in “Park.”resulting in a surprisingly number of accidents injuries and even deaths.  

Some studies suggest there is a correlation with keyless entry and push button start system and the increase frequency of rollaway vehicle incidents.  The engineers at Ford are introducing a new feature beginning with every 2017 Ford Fusion which engages special software called “Return to Park” when it detects the customer’s intent to exit the vehicle.

When Ford was designing the 2017 Fusion and implementing the rotary gear shift dial, engineers realized there was an opportunity to address the problem of rollaways by designing smart software to assist the driver and reduce the potential for accidents under certain conditions.

This technology is designed to automatically shift your vehicle into ‘park’ when any of the following conditions occur: You turn the vehicle off, you open the driver’s door with your seat belt unlatched and the vehicle is stationary, or your seat belt is unlatched while the driver’s door is open and the vehicle is stationary.

“When we decided to go with the new rotary shifter for the 2017 Ford Fusion, the team all sat together in a room to see what additional customer benefit we could bring to the table,” says Mark Zyskowski, global e-shift systems technical expert, “We thought about what we could add without getting in the way of normal day-to-day scenarios, and all agreed that a feature to help confirm Park is selected when exiting the vehicle seemed really worthwhile.”

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