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Failing to understand autonomy could make cars less safe

Many new cars sold in Louisiana boast futuristic safety technology that can supposedly eliminate many traffic hazards. While these semi-autonomous systems do reduce the risk of fatal accidents, many drivers have trouble understanding the technology. This lack of understanding can actually lead to new roadway dangers.

It is becoming increasingly common to find new vehicles with some sort of automated assistance technology. These systems can monitor blind spots, prevent lane drifting or even assist with braking. However, different automakers have their own systems that all work differently. This can make it difficult for drivers who need to rent a car or switch to another vehicle.

To make matters even more confusing, different autonomous vehicles have different levels of automation. For example, one study showed that 11% of drivers assumed that they would be able to safely use their phones to text or read emails while "driving" an autonomous vehicle. As full autonomous systems are not available in vehicles yet, drivers often do not realize that they must be ready to take over command of the vehicle. Critics claim that some automakers tout how safe these vehicles are without fully explaining the limitations.

While semi-autonomous vehicles can make the nation's roadways safer, drivers may still injure others if they do not understand or take the time to learn how to properly use the technology. If a person is injured in a car crash that involved an autonomous vehicle, legal action may be warranted. Legal counsel could help the victim file a personal injury claim. Depending on the accident, the attorney might seek compensation for medical costs, loss of income and even for pain and anguish.

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The Law Offices of W.A. “Chip” Forstall, Jr.

Chip Forstall
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