The Association of British Insurers has called on UK motor manufacturers to fit autonomous emergency braking technology as standard on all new cars to lower motor insurance premiums.
AEB uses radar, lasers and optical sensors to identify other vehicles and pedestrians and automatically brakes if the driver does not respond in time to avoid a collision or lessen its impact.
The trade body also said this technology could cut personal injury claims by nearly a fifth. Currently only 23% of new vehicles available in the UK have AEB fitted as standard or as an option.
Speaking at The Future of Road Safety in the UK conference organised by Inside Government yesterday, the ABI's motor policy adviser Scott Pendry said: 'Insurers are so supportive of this technology and, in anticipation, of the benefits it will bring to road safety.
'Where we can recognise and reward technologies that will make vehicles safer for customers, we will do so, which is why AEB is such a great step forward for everyone in the motor insurance market who uses it.'
He added: 'It doesn't stop with AEB though. We are keen to encourage further safety innovations. Innovations that have a convincing and real effect on reducing accidents.'
In his closing remarks Pendry said: 'Insurers don't create the society in which we live. They hold up a mirror to it and price their policies accordingly.
'Our stance here is not about an industry looking to save money - that people's premiums will come down should be a secondary consideration.
'This is about the insurance industry taking a thought leadership role on a public policy problem that successive governments have swept under the carpet for far too long.'
He also urged the government to 'grip the bull by the horns' and issue a green paper to debate anddiscuss ways to improve safety.
Pendry continued: 'Introducing the fundamental change that is required will not be easy but the experience from abroad - the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand - has shown that it can be done.'