There are some legal issues surrounding self-driving cars that have yet to be hammered out. Who’s responsible if there’s a crash? Are you insuring the driver or the car? The future is looking safer than ever once this technology becomes widespread- think about an end to drunk driving, drowsy driving, and distracted driving. But as of yet the technology is still emerging and only 4 states in the United States have even passed laws pertaining to automated driving- California, Nevada, Michigan, and Florida. As the technology continues to be tested and improved expect more laws to be passed on the state and national levels.
There are 5 levels of automation from level 0 to level 4. Most modern cars fall between levels 1 and 3, while fully automated self driving cars are a level 4. We’ve already become accustomed to cars that keep us in our lanes and parallel park for us, so going fully automated isn’t going to be a huge shock for the next generation. Even today the only completely non-automated cars on the road are classic cars.
There are lots of companies that are researching self driving cars and other types of automation, not just Google. Toyota holds the most patents on driving automation at a whopping 3110. Bosch, Nissan, Volkswagen-Porsche, and Continental Ag all have over a thousand patents each. But even mainstream car companies like Ford, General Motors, and Hyundai are researching automated driving for the future.
The future is looking bright for automated driving. Even Uber is getting in on the idea of driverless cars, meshing the sharing economy with advances in driverless cars. Learn more about the legal state of automated driving from this infographic. You might be surprised how close driverless cars are to being a regular feature in your neighborhood!
Are Self-Driving Cars Even Legal?
Infographic source: Personal Injury San Diego