Smooth-riding robots just can’t survive in our reckless human world, especially on the road.
In response to an Associated Press article revealing that Google’s self-driving cars have been involved in four accidents this year, Chris Urmson, director of the robot car program, defended the autonomous vehicle in a blog post writing that in the six years the project has been running the cars have only been involved in "11 minor accidents (light damage, no injuries)” — all the fault of human drivers nonetheless.
The self-driving cars have been rear-ended by other cars seven times and hit by another car rolling through a stop sign at least once.
Fortunately, the accidents helped improve Google’s safety procedures, specifically in helping the self-driving car to anticipate when an accident might occur. For instance, the car hesitates when the light turns green because human drivers are more likely to run a red light.
Our negligent driving is not only damaging this advantageous invention, but proving humans' natural carelessness is really not meant for the road.
"It's too dangerous," Tesla CEO Elon Musk said at a conference in March. "You can't have a person driving a two-ton death machine."