For decades Detroit, Michigan, has been dubbed the epicenter of automotive innovation. In fact, more than 70 percent of U.S. automotive R&D occurs in Michigan. Currently, Michigan ranks number one in the nation in connected and automated vehicle projects. With more than 2,500 mobility-related patents awarded in Michigan over the past five years, the state continues to lead the industry in autonomous technology innovation. Consequently, it is no surprise that Detroit hosts the annual North America International Auto Show (NAIAS), which serves as the global stage for companies to debut new vehicles and innovations in automotive technology.
Given the public’s recent interest in the capabilities of self-driving technology, one of the highlights of the 2019 NAIAS was the Automobili-D show, an event that featured five days of mobility-themed content and presentations. The wide range of topics covered over the course of the show included: suppliers driving mobility technology, V2I connectivity, urban mobility, smart cities, building a mobility workforce, ride sharing, cybersecurity, and autonomous technologies.
Despite the significant advances in autonomous technology on display at the show, it is evident that industry still has several technological limitations and legal issues that need to be addressed. One of the main issues with current autonomous technology is that engineers still have not figured out a way for driverless and human-driven vehicles to operate safely in the same environment. Along those lines, Mark Chaput, VP of Facility Operations and Construction at American Center for Mobility, stated, “you can’t just create a technology that assumes that everything is driverless and will run in an automated fashion. It has to accommodate that hybrid environment.”
As the movement away from traditional vehicles and towards fully autonomous vehicles gains momentum with the public and car manufacturers, questions of liability and responsibility in accidents involving autonomous cars will continue to arise.
If you or someone you know has been injured in a car wreck, contact an attorney at Abraham, Watkins, Nichols, Agosto, Aziz & Stogner by calling (713) 222-7211 or toll free at 713-222-7211.