Bad rap for self-driving cars might be unfounded
It is unlikely that there is anything the general public unanimously agrees on, so every issue always has people on both sides that make a big deal when evidence goes along with their opinions. This has led to uproar whenever those against self-driving vehicles hear about the autonomous cars being involved in accidents, but it is hard to make definitive conclusions regarding the vehicles yet as there are positives and negatives that California residents might not know about.
One incident featuring Tesla’s Autopilot software took place when the Tesla Model S scraped against a car sitting on the shoulder. This collision that happened in China was recorded and made the Autopilot program look bad, but further information revealed that the driver played a role in the accident. This specific software is intended to assist motorists and requires that a driver hold onto the steering wheel in order to take over if necessary. The driver in this case looked down to check his phone and had his hands off the wheel.
Noting incidents when automatic systems fail is important to ensure that the technology is safe for widespread commercial use, but it seems to be easier to gather data for mistakes than it is to gauge how many times self-driving vehicles prevented collisions. However, there are anecdotal reports that suggest that autonomous vehicles do work as they are supposed to in many events.
Self-driving cars have the potential to make the roads safer but do not erase the need for motorists to remain engaged and aware of their surroundings while operating a vehicle. If an accident takes places because of a reckless driver, this person could be liable for the costs that injured victims incur. Drivers might fail to pay attention when texting or driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.