Georgia Cruise Ship Injury Lawyers Discuss Potential For Autonomous Ships
Georgia Cruise Ship Injury Lawyers
The Issue of Self-driving, Autonomous Ships
Autonomous, or self-driving, automobiles are one thing, but autonomous ships are something completely different. Or is it? If cars can drive from point A to point B, should not all modes of transportation do the same? After all, planes have flown on autopilot for years. However, as of right now, they cannot take off or land without human intervention. Until all modes of transportation are automated, the element of human error will exist. As a result, people will continue to suffer serious injuries or be killed as a consequence of another's negligence. Montlick & Associates has decades of experience representing victims and their families obtain compensation for their losses.
Self-driving ships are a long way from becoming a reality. In fact, there are many regulatory and economic hurdles to climb before the idea becomes a reality. A ship with no crew members sounds like something out of a horror movie. However, proponents of the plan claim that there are several benefits to autonomous ships sailing the seas. The main advantage is that there could be no loss of life if a crewless cargo ship were to be caught in a storm or suffer a catastrophic event. Shipping is expensive and eliminating the crew would reduce the costs associated with it. Additionally, merchant mariners are at a premium, and the industry is experiencing reduced numbers of professional sailors.
One of the most significant problems facing the implementation of a crewless ship is the insurance industry. Insurance contracts determine risk by who has control of the ship when an event occurs. Control will be an issue if the "captain" is sitting in a control room in an office building is using a computer to control the ship remotely rather than at the helm. Other questions of legality persist as well such as determining the role of a computer programmer in terms of his or her capacity to control a ship. Additionally, shipping laws change from country to country making continuity of international shipping an obstacle. Shipping rules have been observed for hundreds of years and amendments are slowly built into practice. But, the law always lags behind technology, and it will catch up eventually making shipping via autonomous vessel a possibility in the near future.
Other risks cannot be ignored. Programmers must be in multiple redundancies into their programs to prevent ships from getting lost if the navigational program stops working. As with motor vehicles and other automated technologies, cyber security is an issue. Ships owners must virtually guarantee cyber pirates will not hack their systems. Traditional pirating remains a threat in some parts of the world. There would be no crew to prevent the ship from being commandeered.
Whether this technology has any application in the cruise line industry remains to be seen. One could envision that an autonomously operated cruise ship would eliminate many tragic events that have led to the loss of life and caused numerous injuries. There would be no intoxicated captain to run aground or a navigator who capsizes a ship after showing off the ship's capabilities to another. Of course, an autonomous ship would steer clear of icebergs. While the last comment is tongue-in-cheek to a certain extent, autonomous transportation promises a future which allows us to believe that we can ride in a car, plane, train, or a cruise ship, and not have to worry that one person's mistake will ruin our lives or the lives of our loved ones.
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If you have been injured in any type of accident caused by someone else's negligence, contact Montlick & Associates today for your free consultation. Montlick & Associates has been representing those who suffer serious injuries throughout all of Georgia and in the Southeast for over 35 years, including but not limited to Albany, Athens, Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Gainesville, Macon, Marietta, Rome, Roswell, Savannah, Smyrna, Valdosta, Warner Robins and all smaller cities and rural areas in the state.
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Montlick & Associates, Attorneys at Law
17 Executive Park Dr NE
Atlanta, GA 30329
Telephone: 1 (800) LAW-NEED
Telephone: 1 (404) 529-6333