Featured News 2015 Will Self-Driving Cars Be Safer Than Humans?

Will Self-Driving Cars Be Safer Than Humans?

If you have ever thought that one day human drivers will be replaced by self-driving cars, then you may be right, and technology is already on its way. Under Google's self-driving project, over 1.7 million vehicles have been tested, nearly 1 million of them in self-driving mode.

According to Chris Urmson, the director of the project, not once did any of their self-driving cars cause an accident.

Kristen Kinley, a spokeswoman for Delphi, who manufactures automotive parts and components, told Fortune that these are engineering vehicles. She said that you can't get from A to B – to driverless cars without a lot of testing. She said that driverless is still a long way off.

Will computers one day replace drivers?

As automotive safety technologies continue to advance, engineers are becoming more convinced that one day computers will take over for drivers, creating a safer transportation system.

We already have technology that can:

  • Keep a vehicle in its own lane
  • Brake to prevent a rear-end collision
  • Detect bicyclists and pedestrians

In a study released in January, the Boston Consulting Group predicted that by 2017, partially autonomous vehicles would hit the roads in large numbers.

This new technology is bound to strike fear in drivers, which is why Delphi and Google are extensively testing under real-world conditions to explore any possible hazards and demonstrate the effectiveness of the new technology – all with the goal of gaining consumer confidence.

Kinly said that the potential for safety is enormous. In April, Delphi's self-driving Audi drove 3,400 miles, with 99 percent of the distance being travelled without a driver controlling the vehicle. The purpose of the test was to demonstrate the car's capabilities.

Still, consumers will need to be convinced that computers equipped with sensors and software will not only do a superior job than human drivers, but will reduce the number of car accidents that occur annually.

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