Autonomous vehicles hold enormous promise for transportation safety. But feasible, sound methods of testing need to be developed. In the meantime, policymakers should work to foster the development of self-driving vehicles while lowering their risks.
Americans drive three trillion miles a year, causing one death every 100 million miles. To prove that autonomous vehicles are safer than humans, they would have to be test-driven astronomical distances. Regulators should pursue other ways of reducing uncertainty about AV safety.
More than 90 percent of car crashes are caused by human errors. Will self-driving vehicles help mitigate this risk? To answer this question, experts must address how safety is measured and determine the threshold of safety required before autonomous vehicles are on the roads.
The first reported fatality in a self-driving vehicle is a chilling reminder that the evolving relationship with increasingly robotic motor vehicles needs to be a partnership, an undertaking with humans and machines managing the risks.
The first known fatality in an autonomous vehicle occurred on May 7 and raises important questions. It does not, however, mean that self-driving cars are less safe than human drivers or that development of the technology should be stopped.
There are arguments to be made for permitting driverless cars in some capacity even if they are not quite as safe as human drivers, because doing so may enable developers to improve them faster, and thus save more lives overall.
Under even the most-aggressive test driving assumptions, it would take existing fleets of autonomous vehicles tens and even hundreds of years to log sufficient miles to adequately assess the safety of the vehicles when compared to human-driven vehicles.
In order to advance autonomous vehicles into daily use, alternative testing methods must be developed to supplement on-the-road testing. Alternative methods might include accelerated testing, virtual testing and simulators, mathematical modeling, scenario testing, and pilot studies.
Motor vehicle crashes are a leading cause of death in the U.S. An online tool can help policymakers understand the available evidence-based interventions that can help prevent crash injuries and deaths, what they will cost, and how effective they will be in their state.
Self-driving vehicles offer the promise of significant benefits to society, but raise several policy challenges, including the need to update insurance liability regulations and privacy concerns such as who will control the data generated by this technology.
Before driverless cars can be deployed, a fundamental question remains: How safe is safe enough? Waiting for autonomous vehicles to operate perfectly misses opportunities to save lives by keeping far-from-perfect human drivers behind the wheel.
This issue highlights RAND research findings on the effectiveness of correctional education in U.S. prisons; an exploration of how emerging technologies present an ongoing challenge to the criminal-justice community; and more.
A new tool can help lawmakers make cost-effective decisions to improve traffic safety and public health. Boosting traffic safety funding by 10 percent and allocating the funds to states where it is most needed would save 1,320 lives and prevent more than 225,000 injuries annually.
This report documents production of an online tool to help assess costs and effectiveness of implementing up to 14 interventions and select those most effective in reducing death and injury from motor vehicle crashes for a given budget.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's interactive Motor Vehicle Prioritizing Interventions and Cost Calculator for States can help state decisionmakers prioritize motor vehicle injury-prevention interventions.
According to analysis with a free new tool, allocating increased federal traffic safety funding by cost-effectiveness ratios rather than equally among states would save more than double the number of lives and prevent almost five times the injuries.
This brief describes an interactive tool that can help statedecisionmakers choose policies that are effective in reducing motor vehicle accidents in their states and appropriate to state budgets, saving lives and reducing economic and societal loss.
According to analysis using a new, free tool, a national allocation of funds for traffic crash prevention might cost less than allocating according to state-by-state needs, but it might save significantly fewer lives and reduce far fewer injuries.
Different states have different needs when it comes to drunk driving interventions. Given limited budgets, how can policymakers know which available policies would reduce the most drunk driving-related deaths for their implementation dollars?