Connecticut test drive track opens $1 million course
A $1 million test track has opened in Colchester, Connecticut, for vehicles that have Advanced Driver Assistance Systems.
Cars with ADAS technology can drive around the 1.5-mile course, on and off ramps, around curves, and over hills to evaluate real-life driving situations, like cars lane drifting or pedestrians walking in front of a car.
“There’s a lot of marketing going on there, but these cars are not self-driving — yet,” said Marta Tellado, the CEO of Consumer Reports, which owns the track. “The future may see that, and we need to be ready for it and that’s where this new loop is really going to help us adapt and not only test but shape the safety of those cars when they do come in the market."
“‘Cause we have to get ahead of the technology, not just trail behind it,” she added.
Consumer Reports has been testing vehicles in Connecticut since 1936 and has become one of the benchmarks motorists turn to when buying a new or used car.
On Thursday, Governor Ned Lamont joined leaders from road safety organizations to visit the auto track.
Lamont reminded motorists they also have a responsibility on the road.
“Making sure that you have a vehicle that's safe, but it’s only as safe as the driver behind the wheel," Lamont said. "And I urge friends, coaches, and peers, reach out and if you see something that is unsafe, unsafe at any speed I want you to stand up and say don’t do that right now. Put that phone away, you shouldn’t be driving you’ve got that beer in your hand or you had three beers a few minutes ago.”
According to the National Transportation Safety Board, there are 115 road-related deaths daily, calling road safety a “public health crisis.”