Self Driving Taxis Are Deployed In Shanghai - Would You Ride In One?

October 13, 2020, Kitchener, Ontario

Posted by: Robert Deutschmann, Personal Injury Lawyer taxi companies, AutoX and Didi have launched self driving taxi service in Shanghai china. You can watch a video of one BBC journalist’s ride here. In a somewhat not comforting way he describes the ride as being in the car with a beginner driver.

RoboTaxi (AutoX’s offering) is competing against Didi which is China’s largest ride share platform. Didi launched its service in June, and AutoX in August. The two companies are competing in a suburb of Shanghai which is less congested than downtown shanghai. There is a total of a couple of hundred vehicles in the two fleets and the rides are booked via an online ap.

Didi has the ambitious goal of deploying over 1 million autonomous cars by 2030 .

There are several autonomous taxi services already competing in China in different cities. With a long list of auto manufacturers and software developers keen to participate int eh industry the pace of progress in the Chinese robotaxi market is brisk. Investment is flowing into the companies at a record rate. This is all beign supported by the Chinese government which has created funding opportunities in autonomous vehicles, 5G and AI.

AutoX also holds permits for robotaxi operation in California which has the highest standards for issuing permits in the industry.

The robotaxis in Shanghai are entirely self driven but do have a human driver at the wheel who is supposed to take over in the event of any trouble with the AI. We have seen that this sort of back up measure can easily fail as humans become notoriously distracted behind the wheel when they are not actively participating int eh driving process.

There have been several accidents in North America involving self driving cars and some fatalities when the AI failed entirely to avoid a crash. In one case the backup driver was charged. The back up driver was streaming videos on their phone when the fatal accident occurred killing a cyclist on the road.

Issues around liability, and technical issues with AI recognizing adverse Canadian winter driving issues remain a problem in the widespread roll out of autonomous vehicles in Canada. Stratford has become a leader in the field testing of autonomous cars in Canada.

What do you think? Would you trust a self driving car?

It is certain that legislation and case law have not kept pace with technology. In the event of personal injury in a crash who would be held liable? These are questions that need addressing before widespread rollouts of autonomous cars in Canada.



Posted under Accident Benefit News, Automobile Accident Benefits, Car Accidents

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