Engineers hope the day is soon approaching that traffic accidents are reduced by self-driving cars. Tesla Motors has announced this month that it will upgrade its Autopilot semi-self-driving system. The upgrade will improve its accuracy in being able to deal with hazards and make its electric cars more dependent on radar, rather than on cameras.
The CEO Tesla Motors stated that these improvements would have prevented the only fatality attributed to the Autopilot system. The fatal accident happened this past May in which a driver of Model S on Autopilot was killed when a truck crossed his path in Florida.
The new system upgrade is described as a dramatic improvement that makes the self-driving car three times safer than vehicles without the system. The CEO states that this new upgrade shows Tesla is committed to action after the fatal Florida crash.
The CEO stated the upgrade improves the radar-based system to better recognize hazards and send its beam through rain, dust, and snow to bounce its beam under the vehicle in front of it. This upgrade should prevent chain-reaction accidents. He also said the new system could stop a car to avoid hitting a large animal such as a moose. They are currently working on preventing collisions with smaller animals. The new system will be wirelessly upgraded to Tesla vehicles made in the last couple of years over the next two weeks.
The CEO of Tesla Motors emphasizes that there can never be a perfect system and that drivers still will need to stay attentive. And while we all dream of safer roadways in America, the reality is that thousands of people are killed every year in traffic accidents across our country. If you are one of these victims, contact Meyerkord & Kurth, LLC, for a traffic accident consultation, at no cost to you.