Autonomous trucks are now allowed to drive down a stretch of Ohio U.S. 33, now known as the Smart Mobility Corridor. As Ohio moves into the automated future, you may be wondering what laws govern self-driving trucks and cars in an accident. While all accidents and personal injury claims depend on the details, we can explore what laws regulate self-driving trucks and cars.
An autonomous vehicle is a car or truck which is able to navigate without a driver by using sensors and cameras. While automated vehicles have existed since the 1980s, recent advances in technology have allowed self-driving car companies to grow.
In October the National Highway Safety and Trucking Administration and Department of Transportation released the first recommendations for automated car manufacturers. These recommendations provided a list of safety and privacy guidelines that manufacturers could follow to create safe self-driving vehicles. While these guidelines are important, it is still up to the individual states to create their own automated vehicle laws.
There are no currently approved Ohio state laws that regulate automated vehicles. The Smart Mobility Corridor is an automated car test area and is currently the only legal place for self-driving vehicles. The lack of laws makes it difficult to judge how self-driving cars and trucks differ from a normal car in an accident.
The framework of negligence will most likely be applicable in an accident with a self-driving car. The basics of negligence mean that a car driver owed a duty of safety to the victim and they breached that duty. Ohio is a comparative negligence state, which means that both drivers are responsible for their actions which may have contributed to the accident.
For a car accident, negligent behavior may include:
- Disobeying traffic signals
- Failing to signal while turning
- Driving recklessly or erratically
Until Ohio has comprehensive legislation explaining the rules governing automated cars, it may feel like the Wild West. If you have an accident with a self-driving car or truck, contact an attorney who has a background with Ohio auto injuries.