Driverless Car Research Paper

Words: 1426
Pages: 6

Fabio Lando
Ethics and Literature
Section 47
Program-related assignment Word Count: 1423 Road vehicles are the most inefficient means of transportation in terms of safely getting someone from one destination to another without injuring or killing the drivers or others. According to Transport Canada’s Canadian Motor Vehicle Traffic Collision Statistics, on average 2584 people die every year due to vehicle related accidents, 13,913 are hospitalized due to serious injuries and 194,827 acquire minimal injuries. One might argue that the number of fatal accidents decreases steadily every year. In fact on average the number of fatal accidents per 10,000 vehicles has dropped linearly from
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There are also several car models that can detect things behind as well as in front of the car using radar or ultrasound. Technology will continue to aid drivers to avoid incidents however the determining factor that will cause an accident or not is the driver. Human reaction time is limited, so no matter how fast or how effectively a car can detect an incoming accident the outcome is based on how fast and how well the driver can avoid it. So whether we like it or not, accidents are unavoidable as long as humans are behind the wheel. That’s where autonomous cars come into the picture. Autonomous vehicles, or driverless cars, as the name suggest is a vehicle that can drive from point A to point B without human interaction. A completely autonomous car can accelerate, turn and brake exactly as if a human were behind the wheel however the car is much more aware of its surrounding and can make incredibly fast decisions and maneuver in which a human could never physical or mentally accomplish. However great this technology may prove to be, there are a range of ethical issues that arise. Being fully autonomous doesn’t only mean that the car can drive from one point to the other, it also means the car must make ethical choices …show more content…
Due to the advanced on board system capable of quickly analysing any given situation it is easy to assume that under any given circumstance the car will be able to avoid a crash. Theoretically if a deer runs onto the road, an autonomous car will be able to quickly scan the environment and perform the necessary action movie-like maneuver around the deer, avoiding any accident. However, like humans even technology has its limitations. Whether it’s a hardware or software bug, or simply an unavoidable situation, there’s a risk that autonomous cars will crash; only less frequently. As Noah J. Goodall, a research scientist at the Virginia Center for Transportation Innovation and Research, points out in his article about machine ethics, “ethical decisions are needed whenever there is risk”