On July 19th, 2024, a car was pulled over in Phoenix for driving the wrong way through a construction zone. When the office got to the window of the car, they noticed something peculiar, the car was empty.

Driver and Passenger seat are empty
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These self-driving cars have been hitting the market hard in the past year, and while the innovation would change transportation forever, they're not quite ready to take over yet.

Why Are Driverless Cars a Problem

This story in Phoenix opened peoples eyes to the issues with driverless cars. even when their system works perfectly, this is a computer system we're dealing with. In this case, any sensible human driver would be able to tell they're going down the wrong side of the road, the computer did not.

Man relaxes in the drivers seat as his car drives for him
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The second issue is, when pulled over, who do you blame? When Phoenix police went to talk to the driver, they were met with a speaker in the car contacting customer support. They were informed of the issue, and told police that they would review the footage to fix the problem. So this car that could have harmed countless people gets off scott-free.

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How Do We Fix This?

Driverless cars are a new innovation, and as such, have only found their place in test markets like Phoenix. However, the goal is to get these cars on every road across the United States. The issue is, these are cars that run on computations, they'll never be able to replicate the true driving experience, and because of that, they're worse at it.

Computer monitor with question marks on it
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Is the answer to get every self-driving car off the road? Maybe! This is a technology that, while exciting, carries a massive amount of risk, doubling the amount of accidents caused by human drivers.

Two cars in the aftermath of a head-on collision
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If this is an innovation you desperately want to see on the road, then we have to convince manufacturers to tighten up their code before they take the streets to ensure us, the human's, safety.

[Independent]

[Forbes]

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