Future of driverless cars faces legal roadblocks

Discovery News | June 12, 2012

By Eric Niiler

Automobile engineers are closing in on developing a fully driverless vehicle that will slow down, speed up, change lanes and take you where you want to go without touching either the brake or steering wheel.

Carmakers say these cars will cut the number of accidents down to near zero, taking human error out of the equation, as well as saving energy by allowing you to get from point A to point B without wasting gas at traffic lights or endlessly circling for a parking space.

Despite these technological advances, some experts say the real obstacles to this driverless future are legal ones. Who will pay if an autonomous vehicle causes a wreck — the human occupant or the company that built the software? And what about a future of driverless coupled with “drivered” cars?

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