Many people have heard of the concept of a self-driving, or autonomous driving, car. Google has been sending driverless cars out on the road for years, modified with its self-driving software and outfitted with the latest sensors and communication devices. However, there are no fully autonomous cars available today that many people may have seen in futuristic movies.
Car companies all over the world are quickly jumping on board with the idea of an autonomous car. The hope of many companies is that eventually, people will be able to sit back and relax while their car gets them safely to their destination. Many believe that this technology can greatly reduce car accidents, increase fuel efficiency and allow for faster travel.
According to one report, 90 percent of car accidents are caused by human error. Another report found that over 1.2 million people around the world die in car accidents every year, with 33,000 of those deaths occurring in the United States. People are often skeptical of technology taking over their responsibility behind the wheel. However, crash prevention systems that automatically stop a car before an imminent crash, and technology that can keep a car in its lane have already shown drastic decreases in accidents for cars equipped with such technology.
Even the earliest models of autonomously driving cars will need drivers to pay some attention to what is happening on the road. Experts believe that although there is great potential for these vehicles in the next decade, accident reduction may only be drastic after most vehicles on the road are equipped with this advanced technology.