88% want compulsory incident cameras for driverless cars

Friday, August 15, 2014 - 15:30
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Google’s driverless car

Two thirds of UK motorists are against Robo-cars on public roads by 2015

according to a recent survey, and nearly nine out of ten have said all autonomous vehicles should be installed with cameras to show if they were at fault in the event of a collision.

Business Secretary Vince Cable announced the move last month (July 2014) for a £10m trial for driverless cars to go ahead in three cities and on certain roads such as motorways and in specific lanes, but a survey of over 1,000 motorists by car incident camera firm SmartWitness showed that 66.2% think that further checks are needed before these automated cars are allowed on public highways.

SmartWitness Managing Director Simon Marsh said: “There were concerns raised about liability and whether these vehicles could be insured because computer error could easily be called into question on any accident involving a driverless car. As a result nearly nine out of ten motorists called for incident cameras to be compulsory in these so-called Robo Cars so that there would be clear evidence of which vehicle was at fault in the event of a collision.”

According to the SmartWitness survey nearly 80% (79.4%) of motorists felt there would be added complications to resolving insurance disputes involving Robo Cars, and that computer error would always be suspected as the cause of the crash, which would make premiums considerably higher than regular vehicles.

Several major car manufacturers are already developing self-driving vehicles and they have been joined by internet giant Google in advancing the technology. All models are expected to have a manual over-ride, allowing the driver to take control if necessary but the SmartWitness survey found that most motorists were extremely skeptical about buying into the new technology – 69% of motorists said they would not want to buy a driverless car and 42.6% said that they would refuse to go on a journey in a one.

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