With more than 40, 000 highway deaths and approximately two million deaths last year, lawmakers are eager to reduce the number of traffic accidents that occur on U.S. highways each year. Self-driving cars – those that operate without the aid of the driver – seem to be the answer that lawmakers are focusing on right now. In fact, Congress is currently considering several bills that would expand the driverless car program and its development.
Safety advocates, though supportive of the development of driverless cars, are asking that Congress proceed slowly. Learn why and discover how an experienced auto accident attorney can help you seek compensation after a car crash that has caused death or injury to you or a loved one.
Bill Would Expand Driverless Car Development
Before leaving office, the Obama administration released voluntary guidelines for the safe development of self-driving vehicles – but it placed some stipulations on automakers. They had to either comply with all federal auto-safety standards, or they had to petition the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to test their non-compliant technology. Only 2, 500 vehicles can be given the exemption each year. The new bill would push that cap up to 10, 000 vehicles.
On the one hand, that expansion could increase the number of vehicles being developed, which may decrease the amount of time it would take to convert most of the U.S. to driverless vehicles. However, there are some serious concerns, and safety advocates are expressing them as Congress considers their current bills.
Driverless Cars and the Accidents They Cause
As much as lawmakers might want the public to believe that driverless cars improve safety, as is, these futuristic vehicles have been involved in several concerning accidents. The most recent resulted in the hospitalization of two crash victims. Another accident – one in which a driverless car swiped the side of a bus – did not result in any injuries, but it proved that driverless cars could still be involved in accidents of a catastrophic nature.
The risk of accidents is not the only reason that safety advocates are urging lawmakers to go slow with the rollout of autonomous vehicles. They are also concerned that some of the automakers may be taking shortcuts, and that can result in defects that may endanger drivers and their passengers. With so many deaths and injuries from defects over the past couple of years, their concerns are certainly valid.
When an Accident Causes Death or Injury
Although there is still some confusion over who may be responsible in a driverless car accident, victims and their families who have experienced a death or injury during an accident with an automated car (or any vehicle, for that matter) do have the right to pursue compensation. Herrling Clark Law Firm, Ltd. can help you with the process. Dedicated to your best interests, our Appleton car crash lawyers will fight for the most favorable outcome possible in your case. Call 920-739-7366 to schedule your free consultation today.