Fatal Crashes Have Made People Afraid of Self-Driving Cars
According to a report from Carbuzz, recent coverage of crashes involving self-driving cars has caused Americans to view the vehicles suspiciously and have decreased their willingness to ride in them. In fact, nearly three-quarters of all Americans currently report that they are too frightened by entirely autonomous vehicles to ride in them. Last year, about ten percent more Americans had said that they were willing to ride in self-driving cars. During this past year, a series of accidents involving the vehicles, including a fatal crash, occurred. It is likely that these reports are what have influenced Americans’ willingness to ride in fully autonomous vehicles. *
Regardless of whether they would be willing to ride in a self-driving car, over sixty percent of Americans currently say they would feel less safe walking and riding their bicycles in areas where self-driving vehicles could be present. In case you have been guessing which Americans are most wary of self-driving cars, be prepared to be surprised. It’s not older adults who are reporting a higher increase in reluctance to ride in fully autonomous vehicles over the past year. Millennials are much less confident about riding in autonomous cars than they were a year ago before accidents involving the cars made headlines.
Consumer confidence in cars that are partially autonomous is not high, either. For example, Tesla’s semi-autonomous Autopilot system has been blamed for several fatal accidents in recent years. While it’s possible that the lack of confidence in semi-autonomous vehicles is a result of people thinking that those vehicles are completely autonomous, it is also possible that people are wary of any car that reduces the amount of driving that gets done by a human driver instead of by the vehicle itself.
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