A few decades ago, the idea of driverless cars was usually saved for sci-fi movies or television shows. But with all the technological advances that have made, driverless cars are now a reality. However, many people do not quite understand just how driverless cars work and imagine that the roads will soon be filled with vehicles operating on the road with no one behind the steering wheel.
Driverless cars also raise some important legal questions, especially when it comes to car accident liability. Who is responsible for damages and losses when a driverless car is involved in a crash? A car accident attorney trusted, such as one at Barry P. Goldberg, A Professional Law Corporation, can answer all of these questions. Call our office to meet with a member of our legal team if you have been involved in a crash with an autonomous self-driving car.
Classifying Autonomous Vehicles
There are many companies who are currently developing and testing autonomous vehicles on the roads. This has led the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to develop six categories of driverless vehicles. The category a vehicle is in is based on how much autonomy it has:
No Automation: Stage 0
At State, the vehicle is entirely dependent on the driver in order to operate. The vehicle has no self-driving features.
Driver Assistance: Stage 1
At State 1, the vehicle has some self-driving features, such as acceleration and driving, which helps the driver. It is critical for safety, however, for the driver to still remain focused and aware of the road conditions. The driver must keep their hands on the wheel and foot on the gas and brake pedals in order to operate the vehicle.
Partial Automation: Stage 2
At Stage 2, the automated system is able to collect information from the environment the vehicle is in. Vehicles in this stage also have more control of the acceleration, deceleration, and steering of the vehicle. Although the “vehicle” is operating certain systems, the driver still needs to keep their hands on the steering wheel and stay alert.
Conditional Automation: Stage 3
At Stage 3, it is still necessary that a driver be behind the wheel in order to take over operating the vehicle if necessary, however, the vehicle is basically self-driving. These stage vehicles work best on roads with ‘predictable environments’ such as interstates and highways.
High Automation: Stage 4
At Stage 4, the vehicle is almost 100 percent autonomous and can operate almost all driving functions. High automation vehicles can handle almost all driving environments, but still needs driver intervention on environments such as dirt roads.
Full Automation: Stage 5
At Stage 5, the vehicle is fully automated. These vehicles are also equipped with artificial intelligence (AI). AI can operate a vehicle under all environments and scenarios. AI can operate the vehicle even better than a person.
Contact Our Woodland Hills, CA Car Accident Attorneys
If you have been in a car accident, contact the car accident attorneys from our office. Call us to schedule a free and confidential case evaluation and find out how our legal team can help ensure your rights are protected, and get the financial compensation you deserve.