The age of 16 has long since been a number that teens in Tennessee and elsewhere can’t wait to get to so that they may drive a car by themselves. But what if by the time a young adult is old enough to drive, the car drives itself? A new bill was brought into legislation yesterday when California Gov. Jerry Brown signed on for cars without drivers to be legal in the state.

Google and Caltech have collaborated on this issue with Gov. Brown in efforts to ensure that the production and management of these vehicles are safe and found suitable by officials. The cars in question would require a person to sit behind the wheel in the event of a situation where the car cannot handle itself. One of the reasons for this initiative is the high rate of drivers causing accidents due to their own errors, rather than malfunctions or problems with the vehicles they are driving. Of this point, the co-founder of Google says, “‘I expect that self-driving cars will be far safer than human driven cars.'”

These human-less cars are expected to be out and about within several years, once they have gone through the appropriate technology and safety tests. It is also reported that the self-functioning cars will have the ability to talk with each other in order to avoid traffic conflict.

Such revolutionary ideas could end up affecting the way we teach our teens to drive. When these cars come to fruition, and as they become more and more adept at being self-sufficient, how will our children learn to stay attentive and not be distracted while sitting in that driver’s seat? It is important for Tennessee drivers to be aware of the different cars on the road with them at all times, especially when that car has something of a mind of its own.

Whether we end up driving self-driving cars or not, motorists need to remain vigilant. A car accident can cause devastating injuries and even death. Every driver has a duty to keep the roads as safe as possible. Knowing your rights as a driver if you are sitting in a seat of a car that can drive itself could help you should anything ever go wrong. Reading the laws surrounding these new auto-automobiles could help you if you ever find yourself seeking legal assistance.

Source: Los Angeles Times, “Brown signs bill regulating self-driving cars in California,” Jerry Hirsch, Sep. 25, 2012

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