Would Semi-Autonomous Vehicles Actually Pave the Way for More Distracted Driving?

Distracted DrivingFatalities are increasing on the roads not just in Florida, but around the country. Current autonomous driver assistance does not do enough to ensure that people actually concentrate on the road ahead.

Although research indicates that the first semi-autonomous vehicles are capable of handling highway driving quite effectively, they can also lure you into distraction and may even increase the number of avoidable fatalities on the roads.

Recent research statistics shared by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration indicate that traffic fatalities increased on U.S. roads during 2015 in the form of a 7.2% spike.

That is the largest year over year increase in the past fifty years. Many companies are using these statistics about injuries, damage and medical bill costs associated with crashes and the surge in distracted driving as a leading reason to support autonomous vehicles.

Many companies have moved forward with developing new technologies and some have even gone so far as to develop early models of driverless cars. Recently, President Obama even shared that self-driving cars could help save tens of thousands of lives every single year.

Driverless CarsThe leading cause of car accidents today is human error. Today’s self-driving cars, however, are not completely autonomous. If the vehicle cannot make a decision confidently then the driver is alerted to grab control of the wheel.

However, if the driver is distracted at the time that this happens or if the autonomous system does not function properly, then things can go wrong extremely quickly. Earlier this year, a vehicle crash involving a semi-autonomous Tesla indicated that accidents can and will happen with these vehicles.

While the final results of the investigation have not yet been published, data from inside the vehicle did reveal that the driver was unable to apply the brakes prior to impact. This may suggest that he or she was not properly watching the road when the accident happened.

Semi-autonomous vehicles may do important things to help prevent the human error aspect from causing car accident to begin with, but what if the driver is lulled into a sense of self-confidence because the vehicle’s autonomous features are in control?

The driver may be looking away, reading, looking at a phone or talking to someone else and may not be able to grab control of the vehicle quickly enough to prevent devastating car accidents. This could lead to serious problems for those individuals in the West Palm Beach area.

Car accidents in West Palm Beach and elsewhere around Florida can lead to catastrophic injuries from which a victim may never be able to fully recover.

In a way, autonomous vehicles may take important steps towards minimizing accidents, but that is only true if drivers still understand the importance of remaining focused. Not having to look at the road constantly because an autonomous vehicle is managing the driving could lead someone to think that they do not have to worry about paying attention.

This could be a major mistake as just a couple of seconds of attention drawn away from the road is enough to lead to a major vehicle crash. This is particularly true when an autonomous vehicle is in charge and then requests the driver steps in to take control of the vehicle.

Florida personal injury law protects those individuals who have suffered critical injuries in a car accident to consider filing a third-party personal injury claim after exhausting pip benefits.

Also Read: Think Your Phone Is the Most Dangerous Thing You Can Use in Your Vehicle? You Might Be Wrong

Consult with a West Palm Beach Auto Accident Attorney Today

You should never attempt to handle a case like this on your own as it can be extremely complex and frustrating. Thankfully, working with a West Palm Beach personal injury attorney as soon as possible after the accident happens will give you the best possible overview of your rights and determining what to do next.

If the driver is not physically or mentally prepared to adapt to driving quickly, these critical seconds could be the time period in which he or she causes an accident and injures or kills others.

If you have recently been injured in an accident because another driver wasn’t paying attention, you may have grounds for a West Palm Beach personal injury claim. Contact an attorney to learn more about your rights as well as next steps.

Learn more about distracted driving and being in an accident in this blog: http://www.sternberglawoffice.com/connection-between-driving-alone-and-engaging-in-distracted-driving/

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