Maryland Car Accident Lawyers: Federal Regulations for Self Driving Cars

Self-driving cars are one of the latest technological advances in the automobile industry. According to certain automobile companies, self-driving cars that require occasional driver intervention are only a few years away and completely self-driving cars are not far behind. While representatives of General Motors and auto equipment maker, Delphi, praised the many safety and environmental benefits of self-driving cars, there is currently a patchwork of rules and regulations governing this type of vehicle. Proponents of self-driving cars say these rules could impede innovation and create confusion, and that it is up to the federal government to establish a unified set of regulations.

According to the technical leader of Google’s self-driving car project, if there is no unified set of regulations and each state has its own laws, the safety innovations, interstate commerce, national competitiveness and the placement of self-driving cars will be significantly affected.

The vice president of government relations for the ridesharing group, Lyft, made similar comments, including that consistent rules are crucial to support continued innovation. He said in order for this latest evolutionary leap in transportation and technology, a streamlined set of federal regulations is necessary.

Regulatory Push Back

Mary Cummings, head of the Humans and Autonomy Laboratory at Duke University, expressed concern over whether self-driving cars can safely operate in all situations. She specifically addressed the fact that many of the sensors on the self-driving cars do not work well in bad weather. She also expressed concern over the possibility that people will try to hack into the cars’ systems, affecting its GPS, or use laser devices to trick the car into sensing objects that are not there, causing unnecessary car accidents.

Cummings said she supports the research and development of these cars, but only if rigorous safety measures are taken. She referred to a Rand Corporation study that reported self-driving cars would be required to drive 275 million miles to prove that they are as safe as human operated cars.

An activist group called Consumer Watchdog warned that the federal government should avoid taking any shortcuts that would put new technology on the roads before they are proven to be safe. Safety is a top priority for Transportation Secretary, Anthony Foxx, and NHTSA administrator, Mark Rosekind, who have expressed that it is their goal to have zero roadway deaths as a result of a combination of software and sensors that can make self-driving cars virtually error-proof.

Baltimore Personal Injury Lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Pursue Maximum Compensation for Victims Injured in Car Accidents

If you or a loved one has been injured in a self-driving car, you may be eligible for compensation. Maryland car accident lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton are on your side to make sure that your rights are protected and that the responsible parties are held liable. For a free consultation, call us today at 800-547-4LAW (4529) or contact us online.

Our offices are located in Baltimore, Columbia, Glen Burnie and Towson, allowing us to represent clients throughout Maryland, including those in Anne Arundel County, Carroll County, Harford County, Howard County, Montgomery County, Maryland’s Western Counties, Southern Maryland and the Eastern Shore, as well as the communities of Catonsville, Essex, Halethorpe, Middle River, Rosedale, Gwynn Oak, Brooklandville, Dundalk, Pikesville, Parkville, Nottingham, Windsor Mill, Lutherville, Timonium, Sparrows Point, Ridgewood and Elkridge.