Self-Driving Cars Crash More Than Human Piloted Cars

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As more cars go driverless, more numbers on safety emerge.

The argument for and against autonomous cars is something that will likely dominate headlines for some time as more autonomous miles are logged and more studies are published. The newest study from the University of Michigan skews the argument in favor of human drivers after two researchers found that autonomous cars are twice as likely to crash as human drivers are. However, the researchers from Michigan still think autonomous cars are safer.

They claim human intervention was the reason that autonomous cars crashed each and every time. Also, autonomous vehicles seem to have a much lower rate of severe crashes than human drivers,, since nearly 75% of autonomous crashes are at speeds of less than five miles per hour and many happen when the self-driving car is at a standstill. However, nothing is conclusive. Google has the most data on autonomous cars with over 1.2 million miles of driverless driving logged, but this pales in comparison with the 2.5 trillion plus miles that Americans drive each year. Given the stark contrast in the sample of miles driven, the jury is still out on which is more safe.

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