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Autonomous Car Pedestrian Accident Lawsuit Lawyers - Montlick & Associates

June 04, 2021

Attorneys for Pedestrian Injured By a Defective Self-Driving Vehicle

Self-driving vehicle manufacturers promise the public that computer-aided driving will eradicate individual error and make the roads safe for all. The earliest iterations of self-driving vehicles have not been as reliable as promised. Operators of self-driving vehicles allow themselves to become complacent while behind the wheel and permit themselves to believe that the expensive self-driving vehicle will somehow take care of them in a crash. Their reliance on the artificial intelligence system that operates the car, better known as “AI,” has not proven to be infallible. Like all computer-based machines, autonomous vehicles can fail, thereby causing death or critical injuries to the driver and passengers in the self-driven vehicle. If an autonomous vehicle crashes as a consequence of malfunctioning computer systems that drive and steer the vehicle, then the manufacturing company of the autonomous automobile could be liable for the wrongful death or damages for personal injuries stemming from the defect. 

Autonomous vehicles have failed in recent past. In 2016, a man died in an accident when his self-driving vehicle could not distinguish between the bright sky and the white trailer of a big rig. The vehicle plowed into the side of the semi-truck and killed the driver instantly. An investigation revealed that the crash happened because the self-driving technology failed.

Victims of accidents involving defective self-driving systems and their families may have the opportunity to file a claim for damages. In many instances, the law of strict liability will apply. In a strict liability product defect case, the plaintiff does not have to prove that the vehicle manufacturer failed to meet a particular standard of care or was otherwise negligent, just that the product itself was either designed or manufactured defectively. However, if strict liability does not apply in a particular situation, then the claimant must prove the company caused the death or injury because of the company’s negligence. 

The vehicle manufacturer is not the only potentially liable party. Parts manufacturers, computer programmers, and other entities that made component parts of the vehicle could also be liable.

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Yampolskiy, Roman. (2016-07-01) Incident Number 52. in McGregor, S. (ed.) Artificial Intelligence Incident Database. Partnership on AI. Retrieved on June 5, 2021 from

Category: Auto Accidents

Please Note:
All information provided by our blogs is general in nature and should not be relied upon as legal advice. Consult a Montlick attorney for details about your unique situation.