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In spite of hype, self-driving cars cannot prevent a car accident

Companies have been promising for years that advances in technology will streamline commutes in all major cities and ease congestion. However, it seems that many of these promises are being revised, as the realization that these goals are difficult to attain. In addition, as was proved by the Arizona crash last year, self-driving cars may not reduce the likelihood of a car accident.

Industry professionals have promised that autonomous vehicles were right around the corner.  After experiencing significant delays, these companies are now claiming that while the goal is still in the near future, it is likely that a human driver will still be required to ensure safety. Instead of eliminating many of the traffic problems in large cities, self-driving cars are expected to cause new challenges. Though computer driven cars are expected to eventually become safer, the technology needs significant improvement before it compares to a human-guided vehicle.

One study estimated that autonomous vehicles must log approximately 275 million miles without a fatal accident before it becomes comparable to a human-operated vehicle. Waymo’s self-driving cars have recorded an estimated 10 million miles without being involved in a fatal wreck, but most of those vehicles included human assistance. In spite of serious safety concerns, governments in some states have granted permission for tech companies to test their cars on roads and interstates without any oversight. There are fears that this places the public in danger from unproven technology.

The technology in many of these vehicles can be hampered by quickly changing environments and unexpected obstacles. Weather conditions have interfered with navigational systems and glitches in automated systems have caused more than one fatal car accident. Regardless of who is guiding a vehicle, those who are injured as the result of negligence by another party are left to deal with the physical and financial ramifications of a serious crash. Arizona victims may seek recompense for their losses through a personal injury or wrongful death civil lawsuit.


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