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Will Self-Driving Cars Reduce the Number of Traffic Fatalities?

by | Apr 10, 2018 | Motor Vehicle Accidents

If driver error is the leading cause of motor vehicle collisions, is it reasonable to assume that the widespread use of self-driving cars could save a considerable number of lives every year? Auto manufacturers seem to think so, but consumers remain wary of technology glitches and unpredictable scenarios that require improvisation behind the wheel.

Cars stuck in traffic at an intersection

According to USA TODAY, automakers are convinced that autonomous transportation could ultimately prevent 35,000 traffic deaths annually. This figure represents the estimated 98 percent of fatal collisions that can be attributed at least in part to driver error.

Of course, technology is not foolproof, and the widespread use of self-driving vehicles will not prevent all traffic deaths. Automakers admit mistakes will likely occur even when no one is behind the wheel, and the consequences could occasionally be fatal; however, by their estimates, there will be significantly fewer lives lost annually when everyone is driving an autonomous car.

The CEO of Toyota North America suspects there may be several hundred or even a thousand deadly crashes every year if self-driving cars eventually rule the roads. Although this is a mere fraction of the current number of annual traffic fatalities, the stakes are still too high for consumers to surrender control to computers on their daily commute.

At the end of the day, as long as there are vehicles on the road, there will be wrecks. Unfortunately, even the most experienced and safety-conscious motorists can find themselves in a devastating crash. All it takes is one drunk or distracted driver to make a dangerous maneuver that has catastrophic consequences.

If you were hurt in a collision with a reckless driver, turn to The Downs Law Firm for compassionate and tenacious legal representation. Ross Downs has been practicing law for more than two decades and will fight relentlessly on your behalf. Visit our website at to learn more, or call 318-284-8551 to schedule a free case evaluation with an accident attorney in Bastrop.

What Are Some of the Most Common Causes of Driver Error?

Part of the reason why driver error is the leading cause of motor vehicle collisions is the fact that it encompasses all kind of mistakes, maneuvers, and misjudgments. Some common scenarios and conditions that can increase the chances of making an error when behind the wheel include:

  • Impairment;
  • Fatigue;
  • Manual distractions;
  • Visual distractions;
  • Cognitive distractions;
  • Road rage;
  • Poor weather conditions;
  • Heavy congestion;
  • Roadwork; and
  • Unfamiliar routes.

Proving some causes of driver error is easier than proving others. Regardless of whether you were hurt in a crash with a drunk, distracted, or drowsy motorist, though, you can be sure The Downs Law Firm will use all the resources at our disposal to gather evidence of fault.

As soon as you walk through the door, we can talk with you honestly about your case and begin to plan a strategy for pursuing the compensation you deserve. Contact us online, or call 318-284-8551 to schedule a free consultation with an accident lawyer in Bastrop. You can learn more about collision claims in Louisiana by visiting the USAttorneys website.

The Downs Law Firm

517 North Washington Street

Bastrop, LA 71220