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Self-Driving Cars? Madness?

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The self-driving cars are currently being used in California and Nevada and at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas and last week both Toyota and Audi unveiled prototypes for self-driving cars to sell to ordinary car buyers.

The safety record for Google's self-driving cars is very impressive, in the first 300,000 miles there have been no accidents reported and Google expects to be have these cars ready for the general public within five years.

The question currently being asked is should these cars be legal and if they are, how will the laws of driving have to adapt as all the current laws are based on a human behind the wheel. Google persuaded California and Nevada to enact laws to legalise self-driving cars and other states may soon follow suit.

However, both General Motors and Toyota opposed the law for fear it would make it too easy for carmakers and individuals to modify cars to self drive.  The aim of the self-drive car is to limit accidents on the road and make travel safer and it is feared that without building in the protections build in by Google this could cause mayhem.  

Julie Donovan
Senior Legal Executive
Personal Injury team

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