Like many people in Delaware and throughout the country, you might think it’s exciting that advanced technology has brought the modern world to a point where such a thing exists as a driverless vehicle. Otherwise known as “autonomous vehicles,” you can basically let your car do the work through an automated driving and navigation system.
Of course, you still have to remain alert and be ready to take over driving if a problem arises. There are numerous safety risks that some have noted with autonomous vehicles. In fact, there have been several fatal car accidents involving such vehicles.
Is that a puddle or a pot hole?
If you’ve ever been driving along the roadway when the vehicle in front of you suddenly brakes for no apparent reason, you understand how stressful and dangerous such incidents can be. One of the problems that have been cited with certain autonomous cars is that their systems sometimes mistake puddles in the road for pot holes, causing the vehicles to suddenly slow down.
Inclement weather, in general, appears to interfere with autonomous systems. Snow, for instance, makes it difficult for the vehicle to detect lines on the road. Heavy rainfall reportedly interferes with a driverless car’s sensors.
Wireless car hackers could put travelers at risk
Inter-vehicle communication is part of the advanced technology of autonomous travel. If your vehicle detects an obstacle in the road ahead, it can send a message to other autonomous vehicles nearby to warn them. The ability for cars to “talk” to each other, however, might inadvertently cause a personal safety risk.
It is possible that hackers would be able to thwart your vehicle’s system and take it over through wireless capabilities.
If you’re involved in a collision in an automated vehicle
Of the many kinks that must still be worked out regarding safety and liabilities for Delaware residents and others who operate autonomous vehicles, one of the most important factors to consider is who would be responsible for damages in a collision? The manufacturer might say that you, the driver, are able to take over the vehicle at any time; therefore, you should be liable if a crash occurs.
On the other hand, if the system fails you, you might say that the responsibility for any consequences that occur because of that failure belongs with the manufacturer. If you’ve been involved in a collision, either while operating a driverless car or because one struck you, it is important to understand the laws and what your rights are, especially if there will be litigation.