Road safety charity, IAM RoadSmart, has conducted a survey that has revealed that the majority of drivers aren’t actually ready to take their hands off the steering wheel when it comes to the autonomous cars that we’re all promised will soon be zooming up our motorways.
IAM RoadSmart says that this is despite the fact that autonomous vehicle technology has huge potential to improve road safety.
In its annual Safety Culture Report, which gauges drivers’ attitudes to key road safety issues over time, IAM RoadSmart discovered that 59% of drivers agree that the growing ability of vehicles to drive themselves is a serious risk to their personal safety. Opinions don’t vary much by age, but women were particularly concerned with 67% rating it as a threat.
Neil Greig, Director of Policy and Research at IAM RoadSmart, concurred: “Perhaps due to misinformation and an overabundance of technical jargon, the public still remains to be fully convinced new technology which in theory has the potential to reduce many collisions on Britain’s roads, saving thousands of deaths and injuries.
“In order for this trust to be gained, we recommend that proper education of automated technology is included in the UK driving test, giving motorists the opportunity to learn about how it works, which will at least go some way towards alleviating the anxieties many understandably have at present.
“Equally, drivers must also recognise that an over reliance on these systems could also have a negative impact on road safety, with potentially worrying results for motorists and pedestrians alike.”