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Human behavior blamed for self-driving vehicle crashes

Ohio residents may have read about the autonomous vehicle technology being developed by companies like Tesla and Google. Many people think that such vehicles will one day become ubiquitous on the nation's roads, but others fear that taking human beings out of the driving equation will result in more accidents and injuries. Research from the University of Michigan appears to support the idea that self-driving cars are not yet ready to be unleashed on America's highways. However, a closer look at the statistics reveals that the fault lies mainly with people rather than computers.

The University of Michigan research found that autonomous vehicles were involved in car accidents at about twice the rate of those driven by people. However, the finger of blame in virtually all of these crashes was pointed at the human driver. The researchers concluded that people disregard traffic laws such as speed limits on a fairly regular basis and that self-driving cars are just too law-abiding for their own good.

Merging onto a busy highway is particularly hazardous for autonomous vehicles. Humans rarely observe the posted speed limit as they rush to and from work, but self-driving cars are programmed to obey all traffic laws at all times. Companies like Tesla are now faced with a strange choice. They must decide whether or not to program driverless cars to also flaunt speed limits and other traffic laws in order to improve safety.

Impatience and recklessness lead to thousands of deaths and injuries each year on the roads of Ohio, and accident victims who suffer injury due to this kind of negligent behavior may seek civil remedies. When a reckless driver is killed or incarcerated in an accident that they have caused, personal injury attorneys may file lawsuits against their insurance carriers or estates.

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