Autonomous Vehicles Are Not Entirely Trustworthy Yet
As we make greater and greater technological strides as a species, we get to watch ambitions come to fruition that used to be just science fiction not too long ago. It’s so easy to get swept up in the excitement of something like that, to want the future to be now in as many ways as possible, up to the extent of sacrificing at least a little better judgement. This can manifest in a myriad of ways, whether it’s buying a new phone you privately know will break in two years, using security technology you’re well aware could be spying on you (if it’s not hacked first), or firmly, stubbornly choosing to believe self-driving cars can handle themselves for the thrill of sleeping behind the wheel.
There’s nothing wrong with a little bit of whimsy and excitement, but those in that last camp are actively endangering the lives of those around them. Technology, especially new and developing technology, is not infallible and should not be treated as such. It’s a worrying trend with predictable, tragic results we are starting to see more and more. Back in December, a Tesla in “full self-driving mode” braked unexpectedly on a highway and caused an eight car pileup. While no one lost their lives, one juvenile was sent to the hospital and several other adults injured.
These cars are allowed on the roads, full stop. But their drivers still have a responsibility and duty to stay vigilant and ready to step in at a moment’s notice. The future of total auto independence cannot be sped up with wishing really hard and risking innocent lives.
No safety without supervision, especially on South Florida roads
If you are a long-time resident of South Florida, you may be desensitized to just how dangerous our roads truly are — but that comfort does not make you immune. Believe it or not, statistics for just the Miami-Dade county from 01/01/23 – 01/05/23 show we have already had about 225 motor vehicle accidents, causing over a hundred injuries. Five days, over 200 dangerous collisions, and that’s without autonomous vehicles in the mix (or at least specified).
A car is a car is a car, and cars are prone to mechanical failures of all sorts. No matter how well-made or frequently tested they are, machines break — especially without proper maintenance or attention from the owner. While driver error is a frequent cause of accidents, so are mechanical failures including:
- Brake failures
- Worn out tires or parts (including flats or blowouts)
- Design flaws and/or recalled parts
- Poorly maintained head and taillights
- A breakdown of the steering system
Therefore, it’s not really surprising that self-driving vehicles are no more infallible.
That pile-up-creating Tesla is not the first autonomous vehicle to cause serious problems on the roads. Even though far fewer of these cars are on the roads than their manual predecessors, they currently have a higher rate of crashes by a significant margin. Tesla itself has reported so many crashes they keep having to explicitly remind customers not to trust the cars entirely and to always be ready to intervene and assume control.
With all these warnings, statistics, and instruction, autonomous vehicle accidents can only mean negligence on the part of the should-be driver. Even without their hands on the wheel, they will still be held accountable if their poor choices lead to a serious car accident or collision.
Holding negligent drivers of autonomous vehicles accountable in Fort Lauderdale
The laws surrounding autonomous vehicles is even newer than they are. This can make the waters a little murky to navigate, especially if you’re a victim trying to figure out who can compensate you for your injuries. While there may be unforeseeable factors and contingencies in your specific case, one thing still remains true: drivers are responsible for their behavior on the roads. This means choosing not to be attentive behind the wheel for any reason, even autonomous driving, is an act of unlawful negligence — which is good for victims. It gives them and their attorneys a major foothold in their case.
Florida is a comparative negligence state, which means knowing exactly who is liable and responsible is paramount to ensure you receive the maximum award possible. If a victim is found to be at fault for the collision in any considerable way, it can greatly hurt their ability to be financially compensated regardless of their injuries or economic situation. Defendants and insurance companies alike will work as hard as possible to try and make that happen, because all they care about is paying as little as possible. The law surrounding these cases can be extremely complex and convoluted — and that’s exactly what they’re counting on. The more confused you are, the less able you are to fight back.
Personal injury attorneys are here to make sure you are never in that situation. Skilled, experience litigators like the Fort Lauderdale-based team at Yeboah Law Group keep clients informed and involved every step of the way without imposing on the rest of their recovery. Our goal is to protect as many victims as possible from financial ruin after the negligent actions of another and the greed of insurance companies. Even if you did share a role in the collision, arguing for a smaller portion of the blame is always in the question. If you’re in the South Florida area, from Fort Lauderdale to Miami to Key West to Boca Raton, we are here for you and your families.
To discuss your specific options after being injured in an auto accident, even one caused by autonomous vehicles, don’t hesitate — call or use our contact form today. There is no excuse for dangerous driving, and there is always hope for victims just like you.