Self-driving vehicles have come to Arizona and are roaming about in Tempe. Back in December, Uber announced that Arizona would be a test area for self-driving cars.
Governor Doug Ducey welcomed the new technology to the state, saying that Arizona wants to be a part of the vision of the future in auto technology. Thousands of people lose their lives in human error related traffic accidents every year. Some believe that the advent of automated vehicles will reduce the amount of human error related fatalities.
Uber users in Tempe now have the option to use a self-driving car or to choose a vehicle with a human operator. Requesting a self-driving car can be done easily via the Uber app.
All self-driving Uber cars will have a human behind the wheel to “ensure a smooth ride.” While Arizona has moved forward with the new technology, California has revoked the registrations for 16 self-driving Uber cars. Arizona seems to have no reservations about the use of the new technology and allowing it’s citizens to become test cases for Uber.
As of this writing, the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) has stated that there are no special requirements for self-driving vehicles. No special permits or licensing is required, and nothing in state law prevents the testing of autonomous vehicles.
Is Arizona risking the safety of its citizens on this new technology? Should the State of Arizona reconsider moving forward without any special licensing or requirements?
Would you put you and your family into a driverless Uber vehicle? If there is a crash, who will be responsible; the manufacturer? The car owner? Mercedes, Volvo, and Google all say that they will assume responsibility for accidents caused by their driverless vehicles.
The world of driverless cars is uncharted territory. The new technology is exciting, but it brings with it a slew of new questions. Hopefully, the technology will ultimately help reduce crashes resulting in injuries and fatalities.
If you’re curious about the experience, head to Tempe and request a driverless Uber ride.