Maybe a more pertinent question is whether highways are safer with driverless cars because if they are, we are ready. So far, the study of human nature and psychology and the advances in science and technology, are proving that driverless cars are a better way to keep highways safe, reduce travel time, and get everyone to their destination without the side effects of road rage.
Some of us are thinking: Are driver-less cars for real? Can we really let go of the steering wheel when we’re on the highway with hundreds of cars zooming past us? Amazingly, the answer is yes, and the benefits will only emerge when driverless cars start to appear on our roads on a large scale. Automotive news offers something new and never stays stagnant because cars and everything associated with cars keep changing, and the change to driverless cars is a big one.
Human Error Is a Real Threat
It’s not obvious at first, but the more technology we have access to, the more of a threat we are to ourselves and to others around us. Think about everything we can do in a car now. We started out just thrilled with the ride then we added music, then a screen to play a movie to entertain the family, and cell phones that basically run our lives. Now with the GPS, our attention is on trying to find our way to remote locations. All these advances are wonderful, but unfortunately, they contribute to car accidents.
People are terrible drivers, and with the number of cars growing the way they are, it suddenly seems like an ingenious idea to have smart machines drive us around. Yes, it’s true. Human error, better known as distracted driving, is the leading cause of traffic accidents. So, maybe we’re safer without driving ourselves around.
How a Car Can See and Hear on Its Own
An autonomous car uses several systems to control a car. A central computer analyzes all the data that comes in from a number of sensors and operates acceleration, braking and steering. Here is a closer look at all the parts that come together.
• Radar sensors monitor the location of nearby vehicles.
• Cameras read traffic signs, perceive traffic lights, monitor other cars, and look out for other obstacles such as pedestrians.
• Ultrasonic sensors located in the wheels of the car sense curbs and other vehicles while parking.
• Lidar sensors bonce pulses of light off everything that is near the car allowing it to identify lane markings and the edges of roads.
Think about the times you’ve been distracted for a second and didn’t see the car in front of you stop and you rear-ended it. In a driverless car, that can’t technically happen because machines don’t get distracted. Machines follow rules more precisely than humans do. They follow the speed limit and don’t continuously change lanes to get ahead causing unnecessary congestion and more possibilities for accidents.
It won’t be long before your driverless car is just as or more useful than your iPhone. With automotive news and advances bringing us closer to driverless cars every day, your grandchildren won’t know what it’s like to crawl down a street looking for a parking space, and you will talk about driving schools like you do Rogers VHS video rentals.