Car accidents occur every day due to driver negligence, car malfunction, road network issues or just bad luck from unforeseen circumstances. According to the Department for Transport (DFT) in 2018, there were 1,784 reported road deaths compared to 1,793 reported in 201. There were 25,511 people fatally injured in reported road traffic accidents in 2018, compared to 24,831 in 2017.
With the advent of self-driving cars, everything changes. The driving safety of the driver (and passengers) no longer rely largely on the driver but the car also.
Should Self-Driving Cars Be Adopted Globally?
Self-driving cars have changed how we view transportation. On paper, self-driving cars eliminate most of the human-induced causes of automotive accidents. The simple reason being computers can’t be distracted, drive under influence and fair better in adverse weather conditions than the human motorist.
While these indicators state that the mass adoption of self-driving cars will lead to fewer accidents on our roads and lessen the risk of injuries, the overall outlook is much more complex than it seems.
Most automakers have insulated themselves from accidents that may arise from self-driving cars and consumers are not totally convinced that a car can make all the better decisions when faced with an awry situation.
What Are The Inherent Injury Risks From Self-Driven Cars?
Risk as a concept is a diverging discourse. Risk can be absolute as every action we take has risks attached no matter how little. Risk can also be relative when compared to other scenarios. This state of relativity brings us to several other alternatives and variables in which we can express the injury risks from self-driven cars as a static state as against other means of transportation or drivers.
Let’s elucidate further:
a. Measuring the risk of self-driving cars with flying by air or a boat ride?
b. Measuring the risk of self-driving cars with driving the car yourself?
c. Measuring the risk of self-driving cars with someone else driving the car while you sit at the passenger’s seat?
While humans are not perfect, technology is not so perfect also. Computer systems may not have the capacity to get drunk, distracted or make human errors, the algorithms behind these computers can suffer from malfunction, occasional hacks, virus attacks and more. The technology behind self-driving cars will have to be tested periodically to eliminate the possibilities of cyber-attacks, malfunction and several other threats associated with an automated driving system.
There is also a greater debate about the choices a self-driving car would make when a precarious situation presents itself. If an accident is unavoidable, whose safety should the car prioritize -the owner or the pedestrians? Is the car going to run into a pole or veer off into a group of pedestrians or the other lane (a one-way direction)?
Who Pays Compensation In a Self-Driving Car Accident?
U.K legislators created the Vehicle Technology and Aviation Bill that addresses how damages and compensations should be apportioned in the event of an accident involving a self-driven car.
The bill states that Insurers will be liable for any death, injury or property damages that arise from accidents caused by self-driving cars. Insurers can also try to recoup the cost of damages pay-outs from the automakers.
The extent of the insurer’s liability can be limited if the individual that suffered personal injury was fully or partly responsible for the damages caused by the accident. The Insurance company will not be liable if the accident was caused by the owner’s negligence in allowing the automated vehicle to drive itself when the car was not in the right condition to drive.
If the automated vehicle is uninsured, the owner of the vehicle will pay compensation for any personal injury caused by his vehicle in the accident.
There is always going to be an injury risk from self-driving cars. The bigger question is if the risk of an accident is going to be lower when compared to conventional cars.
Testing the safety and risk is a greater challenge that requires a humongous amount of data in the form of hundreds of millions of miles to be driven. This is why there is no universally accepted verdict on if there is a higher risk of injury with self-driving cars.
If you have been involved in a road accident and what to know your chances of getting compensated, Quittance solicitors are your best bet when it comes to getting the best compensation settlement in a road accident. The highly-experienced team of attorneys has an excellent track record of winning road accident claims.