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Autonomous Ride-Sharing Vehicles Means Victims Must Pay Attention After a Crash

December 22, 2016

Uber Vehicle Caught Running Red Light, But Who is Behind the Wheel?

On Wednesday, December 14, a Lyft rider's tweet quickly gained national attention after the rider/tweeter claimed a self-driving Uber car entered a San Francisco intersection on a red light and nearly struck the Lyft vehicle in which the woman was riding. The report raised concerns about the safety and reliability of autonomous vehicle technology and whether passengers of these vehicles (as well as other motorists and passengers) are safe with a computer "behind the wheel." Uber later asserted that the vehicle involved was not autonomous and that a human driver made the blunder.

The Importance of Knowing Who the Defendant Is in Your Georgia Car Wreck

As autonomous cars are being fielded on roadways in an increasing number of cities, car crash victims will need to be vigilant as to whether a human or a computer is driving the at-fault vehicle. Suppose the woman riding in the Lyft vehicle was indeed struck by the Uber car and that this event occurred in Georgia. The woman would waste precious time and resources in bringing a lawsuit against Uber and/or the tech company responsible for developing the autonomous technology Uber will be using in its driverless fleet. Any such lawsuit filed would likely be dismissed for naming the incorrect defendant. While the woman would be able to correct this mistake, time and money – two things most car crash victims lack – would be lost.

For this reason, it is important (and will become increasingly critical) for car accident victims struck by another vehicle to promptly identify the "driver" of the at-fault vehicle. Under ideal circumstances both human and robotic drivers would stop at the scene of the accident – but this may not happen. Both human and robotic drivers may speed away from the scene, and the victim's memory may be the only clue available under such circumstances from which an attorney can ascertain the responsible party's identity.

At the very least, car crash victims should attempt to verify whether the vehicle that struck them had a human driver or appeared to be an autonomous vehicle (because autonomous vehicle technology is still being developed and tested, there will almost always be a human behind the wheel of the car) and, if human, try and make as many observations about the driver and vehicle as possible. In the event the at-fault driver leaves before the victim has a chance to identify him or her and obtain his or her insurance and contact information, at least the victim will have information that may help law enforcement and/or the victim's attorney to identify and locate the at-fault driver.

Put Our Law Firm's Over 39 Years of Legal Experience to Work For Your Claim!

If you have been injured in any car accident that may have involved negligence, contact Montlick and Associates, Attorneys at Law, as soon as possible. Our attorneys can examine the facts and circumstances of what happened and advise you on the necessary steps to protect your legal rights.  Our accident and injury law firm has over 39 years of experience in representing car accident victims across Georgia and in the Southeast. Contact us to schedule your Free Consultation at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333). You can also visit us online at and use our Free Case Evaluation Form or 24-hour Live Online Chat.


Montlick & Associates, Attorneys at Law
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Atlanta, GA 30329
Telephone: 1 (404) 529-6333
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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.

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