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How Data Mining Could Decrease California Auto Accidents

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Santa Clara County personal injury attorney car accident

In the current landscape of automotive safety, millions of cars, pickup trucks, and other passenger vehicles are recalled by their manufacturers each year, often under pressure from government regulators. The motive, as one might imagine, is to reduce the number of defective or hazardous vehicles on the road, thereby reducing the number of resulting accidents, and increasing the safety of drivers, passengers, and pedestrians. However, researchers at Virginia Tech may have found another method for increasing roadway safety and the prevention of dangerous traffic accidents: data mining online forums for possible vehicle defects.

Looking for Clues

Alan Abrahams, an associate professor of business information technology at Virginia Tech, along with Patrick Fan and Alan Wang, examined the data mining process as a potential source for early warnings related to defective auto parts or vehicles. The team identified “smoke words” often used in relation to automotive defects or safety concerns and scrutinized online discussion forums related to high-volume automakers.

The study’s methodology was based on the idea that many car owners are increasingly relying on Internet resources for help with potential problems. A driver, for example, experiencing an unusual issue with his or her car is likely to seek advice from other owners prior to filing an official complaint—or even taking the car into a repair shop. Online forums offer drivers the ability to do just that, in a quick, convenient manner, which means owners are often sharing information with each other long before the manufacturer is aware of any problem.

Analyzing the Mined Data

After sweeping tens of thousands of discussion threads regarding Honda, Toyota, and Chevrolet vehicles, the team collected and analyzed the designated smoke words comparing their findings against official defect announcements and safety recalls. As a follow-up to their initial study, the researchers indicated that their findings were able to identify issues with a high degree of reliability, even down to the affected vehicle components.

Data mining, the study suggests, might be a worthwhile source of early warning detection for vehicle problems and one that could easily be instituted by both manufacturers and government regulators. Doing so could allow for the detection of potentially serious issues before recalls are required as a result of tragic injuries or fatalities.

Contact a Palo Alto Car Accident Lawyer for Help

While injuries related to defective auto parts are somewhat uncommon, they still can dramatically change the lives of those who are hurt. If you have been injured in any type of auto accident, contact an experienced Alameda County personal injury attorney. We will help you fight for the compensation you need to put your life back together. Call the Fuller Law Firm today at 408-234-7563 to schedule a free consultation.



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