A Tesla-ting Time: Taking Responsibility For Your Self-Driving Car

    Posted by Ben Davidson about 8 months ago

    It's a very hot topic now in the realms of vehicle safety, but the self-driving car is very much a bone of contention among seasoned drivers. But if you are one of those people who is looking to purchase a self-driving car, should you embrace it wholeheartedly, and take it to the limits, by which, we mean that you sit in the passenger seat, while the car does everything for you? Or should you take responsibility, and exercise the care and caution as you would if you were driving the vehicle?


    The Difference Between Self-driving Cars And Driver Assistance

    Not knowing between the two are causing a lot of deaths on the road especially with the Tesla models. Tesla Autopilot function allows the car to accelerate, steer and brake, but it needs to be noted that it's not a replacement driver. One Tesla driver in the United Kingdom was prosecuted for getting into the passenger seat while the vehicle was going at 40 miles an hour on the freeway. It seems that the difference between the two aren't being communicated effectively enough, but the criteria communicated by SAE international, means that there are 6 categories relating to the level of automation. It's clearly down to the manufacturers to communicate to the customers what level the car is functioning at, although at the moment, driver assistance systems only go up to level 2. This means that the driver should keep their hands on the wheel.


    What's In A Name?

    Going back to Tesla, because the name “Autopilot” sounds like it's easy for drivers to relinquish control over to the car itself, as drivers, we still have responsibility for our own vehicle. While there are legalities yet to be nailed down, there are organizations like The Florida Law Group - a car accident lawyer, that primarily prosecute for distracted driving. By definition, distracted driving is an activity that takes your eyes off the road. So, with these self-driving cars, should we just go up to the police station, offer our hands ready to be handcuffed before we even get in the vehicle? Ultimately, we've got to take responsibility for our own vehicle, and the harsh realities self-driving cars are causing a lot of accidents, we've got to take the attitude that we are driving the vehicle. Look at the video after this article, and you will see the story of how a self-driving car naturally drove towards a vehicle on the other side of the road, and if it wasn't for the driver's quick reflexes, the car would have been involved in, at the very least, a minor collision. While it's very exciting to see the future of driverless cars so soon, we've still got to approach the road with the same sense of responsibility as if we were driving the car.


    A lot of the cars out there offer driver assistance, and maybe this is how we should view every vehicle that supposedly drives itself. Ultimately, the car is in our name, so it's our responsibility!



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