Study Suggests Banning Distractions in Driverless Cars to Increase Safety
April 19, 2018 - (RAC) According to a report from RAC, the results of a recent British study suggest that the drivers of self-driving vehicles should be prohibited from engaging in any activities that could distract them. The study, conducted by autonomous vehicle consortium Venturer, revealed that there is a two-second lag between the time that a car switches out of self-driving or autonomous mode to the time that the driver can control the vehicle. Two seconds might not seem like much time, but if you consider that a car moving at fifty miles per hour covers nearly fifty yards within that time, it is easier to see how that two-second lag could become significant in making a difference between whether an accident occurs, or it gets avoided.
If the drivers of self-driving cars are prohibited from reading, using phones, watching tv, sleeping, and doing other things that could take their attention off of the road, the drivers will be ready to take control of their vehicle in case of an emergency. Driverless cars are a useful invention, and in many cases they do increase the overall safety of the driving experience. However, when an alert driver is paired with a self-driving vehicle, the result is an even safer driving experience.
Bans on distractions are just a part of the laws that are contemplated in the places like the UK, where autonomous vehicles are coming into use. Specialized licensing for self-driving cars could become law in some places, as well as specialized pre-licensing testing that would help drivers learn how to regain control of their autonomous vehicle in an emergency situation. The government of the UK wants to embrace autonomous vehicles while ensuring that the new technology increases overall safety.
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