4 Ways Self-Driving Cars Will Change Our Lives
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Imagine this: you get into your car, tap a few buttons or speak a location into your car’s interface, then let your car drive you to your destination while you surf the web, or read through emails. Sounds like science fiction? Believe it or not, self-driving vehicles are here, and it’s going to radically change how we drive. But, we don’t advise that you take your eye off the wheel just yet, as driverless cars still have long miles to go.
The hype around driverless cars has grown rapidly over the past few years, with many big technology companies getting behind the concept. Google for example, has launched a whole new division to develop and market driverless vehicles around the globe, known as Waymo. The tech giant, along with other multinational companies, foresee that driverless cars will not only change the way we get from point A to B but it will also revolutionize the automotive industry for the better.
However, there is still a long road ahead for this new technology and way of driving. It’s overall safety performance is yet to be proven in the ‘real-world’, so it’s unlikely that many drivers will make the change anytime soon. You’ll possibly continue to see traditional cars on Singapore roads, utilizing smart technology for a while longer. And this may make way for electric vehicles (EVs) — that still requires a physical driver — if more tax credits and exemptions are extended to new buyers.
So,although it would take a while before we see driverless cars everywhere, here are four ways self-driving cars are expected to change our lives.
1. Safer Roads
Self-driving cars are expected to improve road safety in a big way. Using on-board sensors, cameras, GPS, radar and safety systems, your car will have the ability to navigate independently with a 360-degree view of its surroundings at all times.
Experts believe that by removing the driver from the driver’s seat, it’ll reduce the element of human error in driving, which causes 90% of all accidents today. Unlike human drivers, a self-driving car simply will not hold a mobile phone behind the wheel nor will it exceed speed limits or drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs. So, it’s expected that the large-scale introduction of self-driving vehicles can significantly reduce the number of road accidents.
However, some may argue that self-driving cars lack the judgment and appropriate reaction of a human driver. Because, besides being able to anticipate the actions of other road users, weather conditions also affect safe driving. Just bear in mind that this technology is in its early stages with more improvements being tested.
2. Lower Gas Emissions
Older cars and vehicles stuck in traffic are big contributors to harmful greenhouse gas emissions. This affects the air we breathe within the city, which can gradually harm our global atmosphere as well.
From this standpoint, car makers believe that programmed and predictable self-driving cars will drive much more efficiently than humans — no speeding, harsh braking or idling— saving gas and cutting down on emissions.
In fact, most self-driving vehicles are fully battery powered which totally cuts out burning of fossil fuels that’s harmful to both the environment and public health.
3. Less Traffic Congestion
Self-driving cars could help ease traffic congestion, so drivers don’t have to worry about getting stuck in traffic during rush hour.
You’ve probably come across drivers that are notorious for creating stop-and-go traffic situations, which lead to traffic congestion. Not to forget other driving situations such as merges, lane changes, and bottlenecks that cause slow-moving traffic.
The features of self-driving cars keep it moving at a constant speed and at a safe-distance to other vehicles to help curb this issue.
4. Reduced Transportation Costs
Better fuel savings, less maintenance and reduced crash-related claims, which can also protect your NCD, are some of the direct savings you’ll enjoy in the long run. Of course, further reduction in costs can be obtained by ride-sharing, providing more affordable mobility for everyone.
Self-Driving Vehicles Are the Ride of the Future
To sum up, driverless cars come with a few direct and tangible advantages for all drivers. It will definitely make our lives easier and much more comfortable, through the ways mentioned above.
Plus, in addition to fewer traffic jams, having self-driving cars on the road can reduce total fuel consumption of all vehicles, lower the risk of accidents and presumably lower stress!