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Professor says self-driving cars should not behave like humans

On Behalf of | Apr 10, 2018 | Car Accidents

Iowa motorists who are interested in the autonomous car industry may be aware of a fatality that occurred in March when a self-driving Uber vehicle hit and killed a pedestrian. The police chief of Tempe, Arizona, where the accident occurred, says it would have been difficult for anyone to stop under the circumstances since the pedestrian was not in a crosswalk and the road was dark.

However, a professor at Arizona State University says that people have different expectations for autonomous cars. The stakes are higher than they are for human drivers because a fatality could put an end to the industry. He says that cars should not be programmed to drive like humans and that this was the issue in the accident with the Uber vehicle. The car was proceeding as though there were no obstacles in its path even though it could not confirm this visually. Although this is what a human driver would do, the professor says that self-driving vehicles should only proceed at a speed at which they can stop if an obstacle comes into their visual range.

The professor works on software systems that control a physical object, like self-driving cars, with guaranteed results. As an example, he says they would examine how to design a car that can stop within a millisecond of detecting an obstacle.

Despite this accident, experts predict that autonomous vehicles will be safer than cars driven by humans since most accidents are caused by human error. People may drive while distracted, under the influence of drugs or alcohol or while fatigued, and this could lead to an accident that seriously injures other peole Usually, the injured parties are supposed to receive compensation from the driver who causes the accident, but in some cases, it may be necessary to file a lawsuit.

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