ILLINOIS- Jdsupra.com writes that Governor Bruce Rauner is opening the state up for testing of autonomous vehicles. The executive order was signed on October 25, 2018. Currently, only three other states, Pennsylvania, Arizona, and California are testing the self-driving technology. Twenty-nine states have already entered legislation regarding the technology.
Testing of the vehicles could begin as early as this winter. For the time being, drivers will have to be in the vehicles. One question that has not been answered by Illinois or other states is one of liability in crashes involving autonomous vehicles. It is still unclear whether the person who is in the vehicle, the designer of the technologyor the supplier of the vehicle is liable in these collisions.
The technology for these vehicles is developing, andautonomous vehicles will be arriving on roads in the United States. In Illinois, the vehicles will be completely new. While these vehicles are becoming more capable of functioning on their own, many of the peripheral issues, including the possible risks, the liability, and acceptance by the public are completely unsettled. In Arizona, where autonomous vehicles are already on the road, lawmakers are taking steps to legislate the related issues. A fatal accident involving an autonomous vehicle in Arizona grabbed headlines. The victim, Elaine Herzberg, 49, was the first person to be killed by an autonomous vehicle. The crash took place while Herzberg was crossing a street at night. The test driver who was supposed to be monitoring the vehicle was on Hulu at the time. The incident highlights the fact that legislators and the transportation industry are going to have to be prepared for these vehicles becoming common sights on the road.
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