Autonomous, or self-driving, vehicles are the future. But in the present, the public perceives this technology as unsafe. As recently as 2018, 74% of survey respondents said they do not trust self-driving cars. In the same survey, 82% ranked safety as the most important consideration for them to accept the technology.
The safety record of self-driving cars justifies these concerns. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) passed a regulation requiring manufacturers to report self-driving car accidents. The initial report included nearly 900 crashes between July 2021 and November 2022.
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How Hollander Law Firm Accident Injury Lawyers Can Help After a Self-Driving Car Accident in Boca Raton, FL
Hollander Law Firm Accident Injury Lawyers was established in 1996 and is one of the most respected injury firms in Boca Raton, FL. Our Boca Raton car accident attorney has over 28 years of experience and has recovered tens of millions of dollars in personal injury compensation.
Hiring our law office for help after a Boca Raton self-driving car accident means you’ll have an advocate to:
- Determine how the collision happened and who shares liability
- Consult leading automotive experts to build your case
- Gather evidence and prove the extent of your losses
- Negotiate a fair settlement on your behalf with insurance companies, manufacturers, and other opposing parties
- Take your case to trial if necessary
To discuss the compensation you can seek for your car accident injuries, contact Hollander Law Firm Accident Injury Lawyers for a free consultation.
How Common Are Self-Driving Car Accidents?
The NHTSA requires manufacturers to report self-driving car accidents where the driving software was operating within 30 seconds of the crash. The NHTSA uses these reports to compile statistics about self-driving car accidents.
The agency separates these statistics into two classes:
- Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS): Refers to vehicles that have computer-controlled steering or acceleration but still require a human driver
- Automated Driving System (ADS): Refers to vehicles that operate entirely without a human driver
According to the NHTSA report covering July 2021 through November 2022, manufacturers reported 877 total self-driving car accidents. These accidents included 215 crashes involving an ADS vehicle and 662 crashes involving an ADAS vehicle.
Florida law allows both classes of autonomous vehicles to use its public roads. In fact, Florida was the first state to allow self-driving cars without drivers unrestricted access to its roads. As a result, self-driving car accidents are surprisingly common in Florida.
Florida tied Texas for the second-most ADAS car accidents and had the third-most ADS car accidents in the NHTSA report. In total, Florida had 77 self-driving car accidents for an average of about four-and-a-half crashes per month. Boca Raton had six self-driving car crashes in the NHTSA report.
The Severity of Autonomous Vehicle Crashes
U.S. agencies use the KABCO scale to rate crash severity:
- K — a fatal injury
- A — a serious injury that incapacitated the crash victim
- B — a moderate injury that caused a wound without incapacitating the victim
- C — a minor injury that produced pain or stiffness without a visible wound
- O — no one was injured
According to the NHTSA report, autonomous vehicle crashes in Florida caused six fatalities, eight B-rated injuries, and 12 C-rated injuries. The six fatalities included four motorcyclists hit by self-driving cars. Two occupants of self-driving cars were killed when their cars ran into semi-trucks.
Common Causes of Self-Driving Car Accidents
Autonomous cars have difficulty sensing and navigating their environments. Among the crashes reported in Florida, 20 were single-vehicle accidents where the self-driving car hit a fixed object.
Another 68 crashes happened when the self-driving vehicle collided with another vehicle. The NHTSA report does not define which vehicle was at fault for the collisions, but it’s safe to assume that roughly half of these accidents resulted from faulty self-driving software.
Finally, self-driving cars can get hit by careless drivers like any other vehicle. The NHTSA report lists 15 crashes where the self-driving car was stopped and another vehicle crashed into it.
Who Could Be Liable for a Self-Driving Car Accident in Florida?
The blame for self-driving car accidents will usually fall on:
- The manufacturer of the self-driving car
- The driver of an ADAS autonomous car
- The other driver
The manufacturer of the self-driving car bears liability if a product defect caused the crash. The defect could arise from any of the systems in the autonomous vehicle, including the software, cameras, or computer.
ADAS vehicles assist human drivers rather than replacing them. The driver of an ADAS vehicle can make a mistake that causes an accident. Speeding, failing to yield the right-of-way, or changing lanes without looking could result in a crash in which the driver bears the blame.
Our Boca Raton car accident lawyer will identify all parties who could share financial accountability for your injuries.
Schedule a Free Consultation With Our Boca Raton Self-Driving Car Accident Lawyers
Florida law is on the cutting edge of autonomous cars and the damage they cause. To discuss your claim for compensation after a self-driving car accident in Boca Raton, FL, contact Hollander Law Firm Accident Injury Lawyers for a free consultation.