Tesla, Toyota, Nissan, and a long list of other heavy-hitting automakers are racing to develop the first mass-produced autonomous vehicles. Billions of dollars and countless hours have been spent in the pursuit of this goal, so it only seems a matter of time until driverless vehicles become the norm on U.S. roads.
But will this technology live up to the hype?
According to Forbes, Google estimates that its autonomous vehicles will reduce accident-related expenses by $400 billion and prevent about 30,000 collisions per year. However, that estimate is a far cry from the results of a recent study which found that self-driving cars are involved in five times as many crashes as human-controlled vehicles. According to TIME, though, the results of that study, which was conducted by the University of Michigan’s Transportation Research Institute, might not be entirely accurate since minor accidents are not always reported to the police.
Whether driverless vehicles will make our roads safer is still a matter of speculation. What is certain, though, is that for the foreseeable future, driver errors will continue to be the primary cause of serious accidents in the United States.
If you or someone you love was injured by a negligent driver in Mississippi, contact Ballard Law, PLLC to discuss your options for recovering compensation. William E. Ballard is an injury lawyer in Madison who will help you fight for the maximum compensation to cover your economic and non-economic damages. Call 769-572-5111 today to schedule a free consultation.
A Dashboard Camera Caught Uber’s Driverless Vehicle Running a Red Light
Uber began testing its self-driving fleet on public roads in August 2016. On more than one occasion, these vehicles made headlines for breaking traffic laws. Footage of an Uber vehicle running a red light went viral, but the ride-share company allegedly accused the traffic infraction on human error and not a flaw in the technology.
The Guardian reported that Uber’s self-driving cars had trouble crossing bike lanes, which caused officials in urban areas to question whether the vehicles pose a risk to bicyclists. The Financial Times reported that Google’s self-driving cars are now able to recognize cyclist hand signals and predict their actions.
When Will Driverless Vehicles Hit the Consumer Market?
According to Quartz, automakers have not yet reached a consensus regarding the definition of an “autonomous vehicle.” Some manufacturers are focusing on the development of semi-autonomous cars that can only complete certain tasks without human input; however, Tesla CEO Elon Musk has envisioned a vehicle that can drive from New York City to Los Angeles with full autonomy.
The Tesla Model S is already being sold with a semi-autonomous AutoPilot system that enables limited hands-free parking and driving capabilities.
Nissan and Toyota are planning to introduce their autonomous cars by 2020. Ford and BMW anticipate the release of their autonomous vehicles by 2021.
Although automotive technology has speedily advanced in recent years, car accidents still kill thousands of people annually in the United States. If you were injured or lost a family member in a crash with a negligent driver, contact Ballard Law, PLLC to discuss your case. Call 769-572-5111 to schedule a free consultation with a car wreck attorney in Madison.