Autonomous vehicles

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Introduction

Currently, many cities are characterized with heavy traffic jams and high levels of pollution. Many people prefer to use personal cars for comfort and accessibility. However, with the increasing levels of competition in the business environment, subordinates are forced to work for long hours. In addition, they are under pressure to deliver high-quality work within very short deadlines. Statistics indicate that majority of the accidents happen in the evening. The reason is that many people are stressed and exhausted when they are coming from their places of work. The reason is that their levels of concentration is very low, an aspect that affects their decision making process. Therefore, the introduction of the autonomous vehicles will play a significant role in saving lives.

Safety

In several cases, even the most trusted technologies have failed or broken down. Autonomous vehicles cannot be exempted from such challenges. Those opponents of having licenced driver on board argue that in case of a challenge with the system, the driver can take control of the vehicle, an aspect that can prevent accidents. However, the developers of the cars argue that they have tested the technologies under all circumstances and concluded that it is safer than cars being driven by human beings (Nikowitz, 2015). The reason is that in case of a breakdown, they have a backup system that will take over to ensure that the lives of the people are not lost through the accidents.

The developers of autonomous vehicles have proven that technology can make precise moves which would prevent accidents. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 94% of the accidents are related to human errors. The body ascertains that 222 vehicles are involved in accidents for every 100 million miles travelled. However, with autonomous vehicles, the accidents could fall to 8 crashes in the same distance. In addition, these crushes cannot even be avoided by human intervention. This is a clear indication that having a licenced driver cannot salvage anything. On the other hand, through the use of the censors and a well-developed GPRS system, it will be easy for people to navigate through the cities without having to worry of getting lost. The reason is that the maps are well developed to ensure that it is easy for the person on board to get into his destination with ease (Jurgen, 2013). Moreover, through other installed systems, the car will be able to use shortest routes and avoid roads with high traffic jams. This is possible because the cars will have automatic access to up-to-the-minute data that will help in monitoring traffic. This will be completed by digital maps. On the other hand, the cars will be guided by modern technology which will make it possible to activate safety measures to avoid deaths and injuries.

Ethical Issues

The opponent of autonomous cars argues that the cars cannot be able to make ethical decisions when on the street (Nikowitz, 2015). For instance, in some cases, drivers are faced with a dilemma whereby, they are forced to make decisions either injuring four people or killing a single person in a motorcycle. There is a feeling that autonomous vehicles will not be able to deal with such ethical dilemmas while on the road. They use this argument to support their stand that there should be a licenced driver on board. However, even when a driver is on board, the reaction time to take over the control of the vehicle is so minimal. Therefore, the driver will be doing very little during such circumstances. In addition, in such ethical dilemmas, human beings only look for the easiest option. Furthermore, their decisions are based mainly on emotions and fear. In this case, it becomes very hard for them to look for a better alternative. In this case, there might be a chance of saving the two parties. However, due to the rising levels of adrenaline and time constrain to make the decision; they might fail to take this option, thereby, resulting to deaths. However, autonomous vehicles will be driven by machines. As a result, the moves will not be based on emotions. Instead, the computer will use all available options to avoid any form of collision. In this case, maybe with high level of precision, the car can avoid hitting the people. However, such levels of precision can only be achieved by a computer and not a human being. Therefore, in this case, there is no need to have a licenced driver on board because the vehicle is safe when driving without any form of human interruptions.

Distance

Autonomous cars will save space and reduce congestion in the cities. They will play a critical role in the achievement of smart cities. The reason is that with the high level of precision, the vehicles will be stacked more closely alongside each other. When being interfered with by human beings, a lot of space will be left between cars (Jurgen, 2013). However, statistics indicate that driverless cars can be packed with less space, an aspect that will support city infrastructure in regards to optimum utilization of space.

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  1. Jurgen, R. K. (2013). Autonomous vehicles for safer driving. Warrendale, PA: Society of automotive engineers.
  2. Nikowitz, M. (2015). Fully Autonomous Vehicles: Visions of the future or still reality? epubli.
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