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Who Is Responsible for Driverless Auto Accidents?

By David Boehrer | Posted on April 17, 2017

The United States government is expected to release guidelines and model legislation for states that want to legalize the use of automated cars but are concerned with issues such as liability for driverless auto accidents. The announcement comes after automated car manufacturers Volvo and Google recently stated that they will accept full responsibility for crashes involving their vehicles.

Fatal Driverless Auto Accident

While several accidents involving highly automated vehicles have been reported in Nevada and California which have already adopted the advanced technology, so far only one fatal accident has been recorded this year.

Early this year, a Tesla owner died in an auto accident when it crashed into a truck that was turning in front of it. The automated vehicle ran off the road and smashed a fence and a power pole before it stopped. The car was operated on autopilot at the time of the accident. Investigators said that the autopilot sensors failed to detect the large tractor-trailer against the bright sky.

Issue of Responsibility

The key issue arising from the technology is the liability for driverless car crashes. In Nevada, a party whose fault or negligence caused the auto accident may be held civilly liable for the resulting injuries. Depending on the actual circumstances of the car crash, a potential claim for compensation may exist against the:

  • Automated car manufacturer
  • The other driver
  • The maker of a component of the automated vehicle

Even with car manufacturers’ blanket statements of their responsibility for an accident, they can be expected to raise defenses that the crash was not due to a flaw or defect in their car’s design, successfully avoiding damages in a lawsuit.

What to Do in an Auto Accident

Personal safety should be your priority if you’re involved in a car accident. If you’re injured, get appropriate medical treatment immediately. After taking care of your injuries, it’s important as well to speak to an experienced auto accident attorney about your situation. Your lawyer can examine the details, identify the cause or causes, and determine whether you are entitled to compensation against the negligent party.

In Nevada, the David Boehrer Law Firm has been helping injured clients recover from their auto accidents. Our firm has over 10 years of personal injury experience, working very hard to obtain the full value of compensation that our clients legally deserve.

We welcome your call today, to arrange a free case evaluation, at (702) 750-0750.

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