Letter to the editor: Who wants self-driving cars?
Some folks, somewhere within our consumer-driven economy, have decided to spend a major effort to develop self-driving vehicles.
The idea of being able to sit back in your own automobile and head out onto the open road and have the driving taken care of by some automated system and not worry about a thing has long fascinated the American driving public. Today, that flight of fancy has become an imminent reality. We are already sharing the streets and roads of Pittsburgh and Western Pennsylvania with developmental versions of autonomous robotic vehicles.
There have been some not-unexpected development problems. Ongoing tests with cars have experienced some accidents. Meanwhile, the trucking industry appears to be anxious to have its fleets of semi- behemoths certified for robotic operation.
So, now that this wondrous technological development is virtually a reality, some folks are having second thoughts. In fact, several public opinion surveys agree that more than half of the Americans polled would not like to ride in self-driving cars.
If a majority of the driving public don’t want to use it, are we still going ahead? No one has said “Wait a minute!” — so apparently the answer is “yes.”
Is this yet another major decision we are leaving to the wisdom of our government? To allow? To control?