When I hear driverless car one of the first things that come to mind is technology. To see how far we’ve come as a society where we are now able to buy and own cars that drive themselves is amazing to even think about. However, this tremendous luxury may be a little before its time. The driverless car may seem like a smart idea, but when I read this article on some of the pros and cons of self-driving cars, I quickly started to realize that there are more problems with the driverless car that aren’t discussed as much.
The major point that I found most alarming in the article was number con number 9. It stated that “If other technology fails, such as traffic signals that the cars rely on, there’s no accounting for human traffic signals. In the event of an accident, for example, where a police officer is directing traffic, the cars cannot interpret human signals.” This means that in the case of an emergency or traffic light malfunction, the car wouldn’t understand what to do because it has no way of comprehending human signals and therefore won’t know what they mean. This potential threat to the safety of others was a common theme across the articles I read on driverless cars also. In the ft.com article on the future of driverless cars, they briefly introduce this idea of the cars failing to understand what to do in the event of an accident or traffic light stoppage. This could potentially cause several customers to question whether they should invest such large amounts of money into a driverless car if it can’t even comprehend what to do in an emergency situation.
Another con that drew my attention and surprised me was con number 6. It stated that “Even though there are concerns about the adequate nature of public transportation, self-driving cars would eliminate many jobs in the transportation sector, especially when it comes to freight transportation and taxi drivers. This could have a negative impact on the unemployment rate and the economy.” Not only would these cars be expensive, but they also may end up taking some people’s jobs. With driverless cars serving as taxies and forms of quick transportation, they would cause public transportation to take a serious hit because people no longer have to wait at bus stops or pay for taxies.
Before reading these articles, I felt that the driverless car was prepared to take over the automobile market. However, I quickly realized after reading these two articles that the driverless car has several things that it needs to improve on before it can become a huge market hit. Even though the future of the auto industry may seem close, the driverless car still has a long way to go if it’s going to be the future of the auto industry.