Things are rapidly changing in the automotive world and one of the biggest changes is the creation of self-driving cars. In the future, it is likely people will be able to just ride along on the way to work or other places, which could make their commute less frustrating, more enjoyable and much more productive. The consensus seems to be that the roadways will be safer if there are more cars that are driven automatically and fewer cars driven by human beings. The federal government recently opened the door for automakers to create more of these vehicles.

Keeping People Safe

While self-driving cars are expected to make the use of vehicles safer, recent crashes with self-driving cars illustrate that current technology is not accident-proof. This highlights the importance of having effective safety standards in place for all carmakers pursuing the manufacture of autonomous vehicles.

Google, Uber, and Tesla all have a big stake in the self-driving car game, and trying to fast track what they are doing could become a problem if not handled correctly. Safety expectations have been outlined in guidelines that were released by the government, which should help these companies understand what they need to do to make their cars as safe as possible and avoid the potential for crashes and other injuries.

How Big is the Risk?

While there have been some crashes involving self-driving cars or cars with semi-autonomous features, the majority of these vehicles and the companies that make them have not experienced safety issues. While that is a good start, there is still a risk when control is taken away from a driver who may then not be able to react in time to stop an accident from happening. Drivers will no longer be drivers, but will simply be passengers in their own vehicles. While that may work for some, there will be questions that arise and have to be handled, such as how fault will be determined in a traffic accident. That is just one of the issues lawmakers will have to work out in the future.