While new automotive technologies are supposed to make vehicles safer, many have proven imperfect. Self-driving systems can give motorists the excuse to indulge in distractions behind the wheel. Back-up cameras offer a mere 80-degree view. Even lane assist contributes to inattention, since many drivers think of it as an accident avoidance system.

You may own a vehicle with lane assist and consider it harmless, if not helpful. It can be, so long as you follow these tips to use it properly.

How people abuse lane assist

The trouble with lane assist is that drivers use it as an excuse to take their eyes off the road. It creates a sense of false security, since 25% of motorists think it’s safe to take part in other tasks behind the wheel when it’s present. You may assume that your automobile will correct course for you if its lane assist sensors go off. But they only alert you to the dangers surrounding you and do not correct your course to prevent a collision.

How people can use lane assist

Lane assist is most effective when used by engaged motorists. Even if you’re paying attention to the road, you may not see a vehicle on your side when merging. Or you may drift toward the shoulder while driving on a two-lane thoroughfare. In these cases, lane assist sensors will alert you to these dangers and indicate that you must take action to avoid a collision. Used in this manner, lane assist can decrease your odds of a crash by 11% and your chance of injury in an accident by 21%.