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How Google Plans To Rewrite The Rules Of The Road

In the words of Mayor Richard J. Berry of Albuquerque, New Mexico: “This [Google driverless car] is going to change cities.” So what is that change going to look like? Inevitably, it’s going to change motor vehicle accidents, personal injury litigation, serious and fatal accident injuries verdicts, and probably wrongful death verdicts as well.

But before all of that, Google is going to have to change to adhere to the federal, state, and local regulations, regarding all the basics, for example, addressing what cars must absolutely contain in order to ensure driver and passenger safety, to who is at fault if a driverless car collides with another car. As of now, Google is testing these driverless cars on the public streets in Silicon Valley, Kirkland Washington, and Phoenix, Arizona, with more cities to come, in order to gain public acceptance for driverless cars in general.

Many people may not realize that cars with “partial autonomy” are already on the road (for example, the Tesla Model S). With that has come serious lobbying of state and federal regulators in an effort to steer the rules in the direction to the company’s liking.

NHTSA Supports Artificial Intelligence as Drivers

The first victory came in February of this year, whenthe National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) found that the artificial intelligence system responsible for piloting self-driving cars can be considered the driver under federal law. This establishes the precedent needed to make similar findings, such as dropping the requirement for these vehicles to have steering wheels and other parts and products that (actual) people need when they drive cars.  This has pushed Google and several allies to form the “Self-Driving Coalition for Safer Streets,” which will be pushing regulators for one set of safety standards to cover these specific driverless vehicles and encourage support for the technology from local businesses and governments.

Some Officials Still Want Specific Safety Features Mandated

The NHTSA has indicated that it will be issuing guidelines for these cars by July 2016 after they gather public input. Amidst this announcement, some officials are pushing for driverless cars to have steering wheels, brake pedals, and accelerator pedals at a minimum, which appears to indicate that driverless cars may also have drivers in them for the time being, as well. Some point tothe accident that a Google car already got into earlier this year as evidence that the world is not yet ready for completely driverless cars (and this car actually had a steering wheel and control pedals, yet it still got into an accident).

Motor Accident/Injury Lawyers in Chicago, Illinois

Frequently, we as the general public discover that, after technology becomes mainstream, there are safety concerns that pop up that no one could have predicted, but that can end up hurting people.

As one of the premier personal injury firms in Chicago, IL, Curcio Law Offices has earned a formidable reputation for representing individuals in auto accident and wrongful death claims. We have the skill and experience necessary to ensure that you are protected. Contact our officestoday for a free consultation.