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Are Driverless Cars the Key to Safer Roads In South Florida?

It's a scary and startling reality, but the fact of the matter is the most dangerous thing that you do all day is drive your car. Whether you are commuting to and from work, or simply running a quick errand, you are facing a significant risk of getting into a car accident. The overwhelming majority of car accidents in South Florida and across the nation are the result of human error, and there are far too many people who are injured or killed in car accidents each year - not only in Florida but throughout the entire country.

How will driving in South Florida change as a resul of driverless cars?

Both the state and federal governments look to minimize the number of car accident injuries and fatalities each year. Campaigns to end distracted driving and driving while under the influence are in full swing across the country, and many states have increased the penalties associated with these crimes. Unfortunately, car accident injuries and deaths still remain a certain reality, which is why the auto industry and technology industry are teaming up in order to finalize the plans for autonomous vehicles. These driverless cars may hold the key to minimizing traffic accidents and related injuries, and also can help solve other problems on the road - such as congestion and road rage.

For years, tech industry leaders and automobile companies have been working on this technology and developing these types of vehicles. However, it's not been until recently that they have received the vote of confidence that they needed from the federal government. Throughout the early stages of this type of technology development, the experts in autonomous vehicles were unsure of how much the government planned to regulate the development of driverless cars. The government's role ultimately determines how fast or slow this technology is able to be implemented.

In September, the Obama Administration essentially gave the green light on the development of autonomous vehicles when it released recommendations for driverless cars. The recommendations were praised by both the tech industry and the auto companies, both of which noted that they were realistic, practical and allowed for fast-paced development of driverless cars. In general, there was a sense of relief that the government recognized the important role this type of technology could play in road safety and also in innovation. At this time, it does not appear that the government intends to slow down the development and production of these types of cars, which are not only important for safety but also could give the national economy a much-needed boost.

Highlights of the federal recommendations include:

  • Requesting that auto makers utilize a 15-point safety inspection that is available to the public, ultimately increasing information and accountability about these innovative new types of cars.
  • Offering suggestions for unified rules that states can use as they are formulating their own regulations about autonomous cars.
  • Asking that auto makers and tech experts record data and share developments in order to further the growth and development of driverless cars.

These recommendations are great news for the auto industry, and also for drivers who put themselves at risk on the road each day. However, these vehicles won't be on the road until 2021 - at the earliest. As progress marches on, entire industries will have to come to new terms with a future that takes driver decisions and error out of the equation.

Auto insurance companies are already starting to ask questions about liability in the event of an accident with injuries, death or property damage. Who will ultimately be held liable for damages if a driverless car causes an accident? The owner of the car? The car maker? The sub-contracted software development company that provided the software parameters?

Driver or not behind the wheel, injured parties will still deserve compensation

A car accident injury can have far-reaching consequences, beyond the impact of the actual injury. Not only are you likely to be facing unexpected health care expenses and car repair expenses, but you also may be forced to take time off of work or spend extra money in order to fully recover from your injury. This is why it is critical that you work with a personal injury attorney who is experienced in car accident injury cases and understands the Florida motor vehicle laws. A qualified attorney who specializes in motor vehicle accidents and injury cases will work tirelessly in order to get you the compensation that you need in order to cover the damages associated with the incident and injury.

It's still pivotal that you work with a personal injury attorney in the event of a car accident injury. Your attorney will work with you on the specific details of your case and will help you navigate the legal system in order to get the results you both need and deserve.

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