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Self-Driving Cars and Liability

Self-Driving Cars and Liability

As technology advances, Philadelphia car accident attorneys are getting up to speed on how self-driving cars work and their advantages and disadvantages.  Although self-driving cars are not yet popular in the Philadelphia area, the state of California has taken a friendlier stance toward allowing these cars on the road.  One of the primary concerns with self-driving cars is who to blame when accidents occur.

Who is at Fault?

From 2014 to 2017, California has seen approximately 30 car accidents in the state associated with vehicles that were in self-driving mode at the time of the accident. One accident involving a Chevy Bolt on autopilot had grazed a motorcycle as it was changing lanes. General Motors has made public statements that the motorcycle driver was responsible for the crash because he began to pass the vehicle during a lane change and therefore the car aborted the lane change and hit him at a low speed.

Currently, cars that are referred to as self-driving are not truly autonomous and still require drivers to give input from behind the wheel. One major issue that researchers have identified is that the car should be able to rely on the Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB) system to brake if the car senses that a collision is imminent, and the driver has not yet reacted. Certain self-driving cars that come equipped with this mechanism are manufactured by Tesla, Subaru, and Infiniti. Certain scientists argue that the crash mitigation mentality is faulty, and these cars must be able to avoid crashes altogether, not just mitigate the severity of a crash that is about to occur.

More Work to Be Done

For completely driverless cars to be on the streets around Philadelphia, the designs must be perfected, and liability laws will have to be clearer. Many people believe that the crashes that have occurred with self-driving cars are necessary to save more lives in the future. Test drivers for these vehicles in California must complete a training program administered by the state DMV. There are currently about 300 registered test drivers for self-driving cars. Currently, the state requires a driver to be behind the wheel whenever the car is in operation.

Philadelphia Car Accident Lawyers at Geoffrey B. Gompers & Associates Advocate for Victims Involved in Driver Negligence

Geoffrey B. Gompers & Associates will apply current law and understand the technology involved when crafting a case concerning liability in car accidents. We are prepared for the technological advances concerning cars that are underway. If you have been involved in any type of car accident, feel free to contact us online or call 215-567-6600 to schedule a free consultation. We are centrally located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and Voorhees, New Jersey and we proudly serve clients throughout the surrounding areas.