The National Safety Council, a top safety authority in the United States has said that autonomous cars are misunderstood when it comes to their safety. Deborah Hersman, the president and chief executive of the National Safety Council, stated that there was a lot of “confusion” about the technology and its safety.
She made this statement while speaking at the launch of a public education group which was organized by safety campaigners and car and technology companies. According to Hersman, self-driving cars offered the best hope for vehicle safety and could be a “potentially lifesaving technology” as widespread use of automated cars could potentially reduce the risk of road accidents and drink-driving deaths which are caused by human error.
Members of the new group said that there was undue worry on the part of the public about the safety of self-driving cars. Another factor that needs to be taken into account is that companies working on the technology often fail to reveal the breakthroughs they have achieved in terms of safety until they have been thoroughly tested. Hence, the technology is probably more advanced than we think.
“This is just about public education,” said Ms Hersman. “We want people to understand it, and we want people to see it in action.”
Ms Hersman is planning to leave the National Safety Council and to soon join Google’s autonomous car company, Waymo as its chief safety officer.
Other members of the group include Audi, Toyota, chip company Nvidia, Daimler, and General Motors.
They plan to conduct demonstrations and awareness campaigns among the members of the public about self-driving cars.
Kyle Vogt, chief executive of San Francisco-based self-driving company Cruise, used the same event to state that the public fear and misunderstanding of self-driving cars was caused due to “misinformation”.
The group also includes the National Council on Ageing and the National Federation of the Blind.
Self-driving car tests have faced backlash from the public after an incident in which a woman was killed by an accident in which an Uber self-driving vehicle was involved. Recently, some of Waymo’s autonomous cars in Phoenix, Arizona, were attacked by locals.
Manju Mathew, an MBA in marketing, completed publisher training courses from the Oxford Brookes University and New York University. She started with marketing and PR roles before moving on to her current position as a full time writer. Currently living in Dubai, her life as an expat has sharpened her observation skills and flair for writing. She enjoys writing about luxury cars like Ferrari, Lamborghini, etc even if she can only dream of owning them.
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