Cow avoidance system for vehicles on India’s roads

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Engineers in India have designed a new 'cow avoidance system' for India’s large road network.

Cows are a very common sight on Indian roads and Indians have a great love for these gentle domestic animals.

In Hinduism, the cow is seen as sacred and so they are deeply respected. Most Hindus respect the cow for her gentle nature. One of the main teachings of Hinduism is to do no harm to an animal (ahimsa).

As a result, two engineers have come up with a solution to help drivers avoid any accidents on the roads with these four-legged obstacles.

The research engineers based at Gujarat Technological University have developed an automatic obstacle detection and avoidance alert system to help vehicles avoid colliding with cows on roads.

The system is very similar to the way obstacle avoidance systems work on driverless vehicles.


Researchers Sachin Sharma and Dharmesh Shah say the system uses dashboard mathematical computer algorithms tied in with cameras in the vehicle that can determine whether an object near the vehicle is a cow and whether it represents a risk to the vehicle.

When the system detects a cow it triggers an audio or visual indicator to alert the driver to use the brakes even if they haven’t seen the animal themselves.

According to the researcher's own admission, their algorithm still needs a bit of tweaking as they have not factored in night-time driving but they believe their technology could play a role in helping reduce traffic accidents in the country.

The new research has been published in the International Journal of Vehicle Autonomous Systems.


Justin Kavanagh
Justin Kavanagh is a recognised leader in automotive intelligence and vehicle data supply to the entire motor industry. He has almost 20 years experience in building systems from the ground up. As the Managing Director of Vehicle Management System, he understands the need and importance of trustworthy and reliable vehicle history and advice to both the trade and the public.
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