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The Impact Of Autonomous Vehicles On Car Accident Litigation

Posted April 25, 2024 in Personal Injury

The advent of autonomous vehicles (AVs) promises a future with safer roads and fewer accidents. However, as this technology evolves and becomes more common, it also brings new challenges and questions, particularly in the realm of car accident litigation. As the Columbia, SC car accident lawyers at Woron and Dhillon, LLC, we’re keeping a close eye on these developments to best serve our clients.

Understanding The Legal Landscape

Autonomous vehicles are designed to reduce human error, which is the leading cause of most traffic accidents. While the technology behind AVs is impressive, it isn’t infallible. Accidents still happen, and when they do, determining liability can be complex. The traditional model of driver responsibility is shifting as the lines blur between operator actions and vehicle automation.

This shift leads us to question: In the event of an accident, who is at fault—the manufacturer, the software developer, or the human operator (if present)? These questions are at the forefront of car accident litigation involving autonomous vehicles.

Liability In The Age Of Automation

With AVs, liability may extend beyond the driver to include manufacturers and software engineers who design and program the autonomous functions. This multi-layered liability makes it crucial for legal professionals to understand how autonomous systems work and interact with public roadways and other vehicles.

For instance, if a self-driving car’s system fails to interpret a stop signal due to a software glitch, responsibility could lie with the software developer or the manufacturer instead of the car’s occupant. However, if the vehicle was in a semi-autonomous mode that required driver intervention and the driver failed to act, the liability might shift back to the human behind the wheel.

Data’s Role In Legal Proceedings

One significant advantage in AV accident litigation is the abundance of data these vehicles can provide. Autonomous vehicles are equipped with numerous sensors and cameras that record vast amounts of data before, during, and after an incident. This data is invaluable in reconstructing the accident to determine fault and liability.

Analyzing this data can clarify what the vehicle was ‘thinking’ and doing at the time of the accident. This analysis is crucial in understanding whether the accident was caused by a technology failure, a human error, or a combination of both. We use this data to accurately represent our clients, ensuring that all factors are considered in pursuing their claims.

The Future Of Car Accident Litigation

As lawmakers and regulatory bodies continue to adapt to the rise of autonomous technology, the legal framework governing these vehicles will evolve. Staying informed about these changes is essential for all parties involved in car accident litigation, including legal professionals, insurers, manufacturers, and drivers.

At Woron and Dhillon, LLC, we remain committed to adapting our practices to meet the challenges posed by new technology. Our team is dedicated to ensuring that our clients receive the most informed and effective representation possible in these complex cases.

If you’ve been involved in an accident with an autonomous vehicle, or have questions about how AV technology might impact your legal rights, we’re here to help. We are a team of attorneys who are committed to holding negligent parties accountable, and helping injury victims get the care they need.Reach out to us today to discuss your case and explore your options. Let’s work together to navigate this new era of automotive technology and secure the justice you deserve.

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