There is no question that driverless vehicles are the future. Several companies such as Uber and Google are developing self-driving fleets, while Tesla has begun to make partially autonomous automobiles available for personal use.
What impacts could autonomous cars have on our daily lives in the future? Although we’re aware of their impact on the future of our surroundings, it would be wise to think about them carefully. The following consequences are likely to happen if driverless cars are in the future:
The driving and transport industries employ many people in the United States. Autonomous vehicles would eliminate these jobs if automated vehicles were allowed on public roads. Not only would drivers lose their jobs, but supervisors and support staff for drivers would not have work, either.
Investopedia used the US Bureau of Labor Statistics to add up the affected jobs and estimated that 4.5 million people who drive for a living could face unemployment if self-driving vehicles become more widespread.
Decreased private ownership of cars
As autonomous cars become available to the general public, some people may choose not to buy them.
Companies such as Uber and Google are likely to have fleets of self-driving cars, and individuals will have the option to take these vehicles wherever they need to go.
The functioning in this field will resemble how taxis and Uber work in the present, but with autonomous vehicles instead of human drivers. In fact, 49% of businesses with fleets of 31 to 100 vehicles forecast that self-driving trucks will play a role in their fleets within the next 10 years.
Increase in drug and alcohol use
Autonomous vehicles may reduce instances of drunk driving, as intoxicated drivers wouldn’t be as tempted to get behind the wheel of a car after consuming alcohol or drugs.
This would seem to be a beneficial effect, as an alcohol-related car crash causes around 29 deaths every day in the United States.
There can be a negative effect as well, though, with higher instances of substance abuse in persons who would’ve been designated drivers. People who normally abstain from drinking because they are designated drivers might opt to increase their consumption.
Self-driving cars are controlled entirely by computers. Unfortunately, computer hardware and software are vulnerable to attacks by malicious hackers. They might be able to enter the vehicle control systems and take remote control of the vehicle.
Another cyber danger of driverless cars is having such vehicles communicate on a single network.
This does not yet exist, but in the end, as more of these vehicles hit the road, this network would have to be created to maintain smooth operation between them in case of an attack.
When operating a vehicle doesn’t require you to know how to drive, it becomes much more accessible.
Those with preexisting medical conditions that might limit their ability to drive, such as the elderly and disabled, might select an automated car as a means to travel. Automated vehicles like this could be usefully applied in rural regions where mass transit is less available.
Better pedestrian safety
Researchers are studying whether self-driving cars would decrease traffic accidents. It’s possible that self-driving cars would decrease the likelihood of traffic-related injuries.
Autonomous vehicles can use Global Positioning System (GPS) to plan out feasible routes for public roads, thereby making them safer for people partaking in walking. This could lead to the creation of more pedestrian-only areas.
We are still taking a look at some of the implications of driverless cars for our roadways. Things are likely to get better, but regardless of whether they do, we have to recognize their influence.
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