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Testing of self-driving cars is far from sufficient

On Behalf of | Apr 9, 2019 | Car Accidents |

Many California motorist are wary about self-driving cars, and for good reason, as several serious accidents have been linked to them. In May 2016, a driver who had his Tesla Model S on Autopilot died when the vehicle collided with a truck. In March 2018, a self-driving Uber vehicle in Arizona struck and killed a pedestrian.

Unfortunately, it appears that several automakers are rushing to introduce these vehicles to the public, neglecting safety in the process. This is the conclusion of a Rand Corporation report, which goes on to say that autonomous vehicles may need to be test driven for millions or billions of miles before they can be deemed reliable enough to prevent crashes.

Of all the self-driving car makers, Waymo has put in the most test driving. Its vehicles have been drive for 10 million miles in the real world and for 7 billion miles using in-house simulation technology. However, the report suggests that even this amount is insufficient. Rand also suggests a rigorous regime for testing variables. Nvidia, which has announced a simulation platform called Drive Constellation, may come close to fulfilling this requirement. The platform will allow developers to test variables like weather and road conditions, pedestrian behaviors, and traffic flow in thousands of virtual-reality scenarios.

People who are injured in a car wreck with a self-driving vehicle may want to meet with an attorney in order to learn how to proceed. Drivers have a duty of care to others on the road, even when behind the wheel of an autonomous car. In addition, in some cases the manufacturer might bear responsibility if technology or design failure caused the accident.