Tuesday, 29 September 2020 17:00

NYC Truck Accident Lawyer Update: Autonomous Trucks Are Here. Are They Safe?


As children, many people dreamed of a future full of flying cars and other gadgets popular in the cartoon The Jetsons. However, the future of America’s highways is likely to feature autonomous vehicles rather than those with wings.

In fact, tech experts say the future is already here, with media reports stating that driverless semi-trucks are set to seriously disrupt the trucking industry as soon as 2021. 


This is almost certain to have a ripple effect across the entire automotive industry, as well as other areas of life. Trucks transport 70% of freight in the U.S. With more autonomous trucks on the road, can we be certain a driverless semi is safe? 


Pros and Cons of Autonomous Semis


Proponents of self-driving trucks say they offer a number of safety benefits. On the other hand, detractors claim autonomous trucks are a danger. Both sides have their points. Here is a look at the various arguments. 


Trucker Fatigue


People who push driverless semi-trucks point to trucker fatigue as a major factor in semi-truck accidents. Without a human driver behind the wheel, they argue, there is no risk of a driver falling asleep and running the truck off the road or, worse, smashing into another vehicle.


Federal rules that dictate how many hours a truck driver can spend behind the wheel currently set the limit at 11 hours within any 14-hour period. Additionally, truck drivers are required to have a rest period of 10 consecutive hours before they can carry out another shift. 


The problem is some carrier companies pressure their drivers to bend the rules or ignore them entirely. When a truck driver’s livelihood is threatened by an unscrupulous trucking company, they might feel like they have no choice but to drive tired.

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