Safety Advocates Urge Car Companies to Release Safety Reports on Self-Driving Cars

Baltimore Car Accident Lawyers weigh in on safety reporting of self-driving cars.Most of the major automobile manufacturers have a self-driving car that they are developing and testing. The Trump administration recently urged U.S. automakers to submit safety reports that outline how they are testing their vehicles, and how those vehicles performed. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Association (NHTSA), only three automobile companies complied with this request, including General Motors Co., Ford Motor Co., and the Google-affiliated Waymo, yet some safety officials claim that the reports that were submitted looked less like a regulatory filing and more like a marketing brochure. 

Many safety advocates believe that self-driving assessments should be mandatory to ensure that all automakers are following the latest safety regulations. The paperwork that automakers were currently asked to voluntarily submit falls short of adequately reassuring the public that comprehensive, rigorous testing is being done. While the Trump administration has said that the federal government cannot force automakers to submit safety assessments, safety advocates argue that automobile manufacturers should feel compelled to reassure the public about their self-driving cars.

According to the executive publisher of Cox Automotive’s Autotrader and Kelley Blue Book, as consumers become more aware of the autonomous technology, there has been a shift in their comfort level. Because they have a better understanding of the technology, and the complexities involved in creating an autonomous vehicle, consumers are less comfortable with the idea of handing over complete control.

Safety Reports Provided by Three Automobile Manufacturers

General Motors provided a 33-page safety assessment, which stated that each of the self-driving vehicles that it is currently testing have human driver controls and humans seated in the driver and passenger seats. The automaker claims that they will continue to remain focused on safety throughout each phase of development. Ford submitted a 44-page filing that also stated that they currently use human safety operators in their self-driving test vehicles, as well as a safety driver and a co-pilot. Drivers go through intense training and certification. Waymo’s 43-page filing also reported that they conduct extensive testing on several driving situations, including public roads, a closed course, and simulated driving. Waymo also tested a fully robotic car in Arizona and hopes to receive permission to test the vehicle in California.

Other companies, such as Fiat Chrysler Automobiles U.S., Volkswagen AG, and Hyundai Motor America have not submitted safety reports, even though they released statements saying that safety is their top priority. According to the Transportation Secretary, if auto companies do not release information about the testing of their self-driving cars, consumers will be less likely to accept the technology.

Baltimore Car Accident Lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Represent Victims of Self-Driving Car Accidents

If you have been seriously injured in a car accident involving a self-driving vehicle, do not hesitate to contact the Baltimore car accident lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton. Self-driving cars must comply with rigorous safety regulations. Failure to do so can result in serious injuries and fatalities. We will investigate the details of your case and determine who is responsible for your injuries. Our dedicated team will secure the maximum financial compensation you deserve. To schedule a free, confidential 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 car accident victims in Maryland, including those in Anne Arundel County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Harford County, Howard County, Montgomery County, Maryland’s Western Counties, Prince George’s County, Queen Anne’s County, Southern Maryland, and the Eastern Shore, as well as the communities of Catonsville, Essex, Halethorpe, Middle River, Rosedale, Gwynn Oak, Brooklandville, Dundalk, Pikesville, Nottingham, Windsor Mill, Lutherville, Timonium, Sparrows Point, Ridgewood, and Elkridge.