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Keyless (Thump Start) Cars Are The New Deal In Town, Do You Know It Can Kill? These Are The Dangers To Bear In Mind




The truth is,  everybody wants to get their hands on the newest technology in town. In fact,  most people live for it. Some can't wait to trade in their old gadget to get the newest and the fuss keep going on and on and on. But new tech also pose new challenges as well as new risk.

Let's talk about the advent of keyless (thumb start) cars and the dangers it poses to humanity. Some will say Exlink Autos have started again but am just looking out for most innocent folks out there who may fall victim sooner than later. Yes, convenience is what everybody lives for but what is convenience when it poses 1000 ways to die? Before,  you have to physically turn of the ignition before the system will allow you to remove the car key. Not now anymore. 

Let's remember,  when in car,  you are riding and not at "potential". In this vein,  convenience features in a Car,  like touchscreens, however, can add distraction and, at worst, can be dangerous. It's difficult to know where to draw the line. The New York Times suggests in a recent story that keyless-ignition systems pose an overlooked risk because sometimes, the driver fails to switch the car off or doesn't realize it's still running. It's a follow-up to a larger investigation citing the dangers that can happen when you don't have to physically turn off a key to be sure your car is shut down.

A recent story of an unexpected death of Sherry Penney and James Livingston, a married couple who passed away from carbon-monoxide poisoning after accidentally leaving their 2017 Toyota Avalon running inside a closed garage was recorded by NY Times. The NY Times also estimated that, since 2006, 36 people have died in incidents similar to this one in the United States and "dozens of others" have been injured and not taken into account similar events in other countries. 

Not doubt,  keyless (thumb start) ignition is popular and rapidly becoming a standard feature because it's convenient. The driver can leave the "key fob" in a pocket or purse, never worrying about locking the keys in the car. This is because it communicates wirelessly with the car's computer. With no key to turn, there's far less danger of shutting off a car while in motion, whether accidentally or due to a faulty part.

The issue here is how to avoid ending up like Sherry Penney and James Livingston, and, as with any tragedy, it's complicated. The NY Times also said recently that half of the carbon monoxide injuries and fatalities it identified were Toyota and Lexus models, even though Toyota uses an audible beeping warning. The Toyota Avalon does not feature the kind of automatic-shutoff function that other automakers employ, which happens after either a set time limit or through some combination of unbuckling the seatbelt, opening the driver's door, and exiting the vehicle with the key. Toyota has said it will add an automatic shutoff feature on its 2020 models with keyless ignition.

However, owning to the kind of cars being produced this days, it is not drivers' fault that it's harder to tell whether or not their car is on or off these days. Even so, it is their responsibility to learn how to tell what "on" and "off" are like on the cars they own and drive.

Finally, the evolving technology in the automobile industry requires a mental shift for both the drivers and owners. Now that you don't mechanically stick a key in the ignition and even hear engine noise when the car is running, you need to pay closer attention to whether you've shut off the vehicle or not. It's clear we can't trust automakers to protect us from every scenario, any more than we can trust the government for security in Nigeria. As cars become more gadget-like or should I say appliance-like, the risk of problems like this only becomes more likely. 

This is to remind you (those who love keyless cars) that the most important safety feature in a car, as always, is you.

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