Self-driving are not always alert when driving. Computers

Self-driving vehicles offer countless benefits when it comes to keeping our roadways safer.  The first way that self-driving cars will make our roadways safer is because they will allow people to feel more comfortable.  At first, it may seem scary that a car is driving without human input, but after getting used to it, it will feel more comfortable, especially when on the interstate.  When on the interstate, passing trucks can be a bit intimidating.  I am worried that the truck drivers might be drowsy or not paying attention.  I am worried that they might drift into my lane.  This can also be said for all cars I am interacting with on the road.  It is hard to know if the people driving on the road are paying attention to driving.Fortunately, self-driving cars are already helping with this.  Embark is currently using their self-driving trucks to deliver refrigerators (Davies 2017).  These trucks are driving a route from El Paso, Texas to Palm Springs, California along Interstate 10 (Davies 2017).  Currently, a driver is still required to sit in the truck and monitor it to ensure everything is running properly.  In the future, however, the goal is for the truck driver to drive it to the interstate.  The truck driver can then get out and let the truck drive by itself along Interstate 10.  Although this may sound like a huge challenge, it isn’t as challenging as it may seem.  Along the interstate, there aren’t pedestrians, traffic lights, or other complicated traffic things.  The routes these trucks would drive would not be too crowded.  The big benefit of having these self-driving trucks drive rather than humans is that the computers won’t get tired.  It is easy for truck drivers to get tired and distracted along these long stretches of highway.  This means they are not always alert when driving.  Computers will help all on the roadways by keeping the truck in its lane and driving perfectly along the interstate.  This helps to create a more comfortable and safer environment for everyone on the roadway.  The truck drivers don’t have to try to stay focus and risk becoming drowsy and go off the road, and the cars around the semi can feel confident that the truck is going to stay in its lane and not hit anyone.  Self-driving trucks could prevent 4,000 fatal truck crashes each year that usually result from human error (Davies 2017).Another reason that self-driving cars will create safer roadways is because of the consistency that self-driving cars offer.  Self-driving cars are unlike humans in that they do not get tired, bored, or have distractions.  These cars will consistently do the same thing each day.  This consistently will ensure that a minimal number of crashes occur.Although self-driving cars will have an overall positive impact on the world, like most new technology, there are some concerns.  An example of one concern is a fatal car crash that occurred while a driver was using the Tesla autopilot feature (Spacek).  The car drove right under a semi that was making a left-hand turn (Spacek).  It is suspected that the truck trailer had blended in with the sky causing the Tesla autopilot system to not sense it (Spacek).  Although this may seem like an example of self-driving cars causing safety hazards, the main cause of the accident was the driver not paying attention.  The driver using this technology is technically required to be attentive and be ready to take control of the car at any second when using this feature.  In this case the driver wasn’t.  Many witnesses say the driver should have seen the truck and at least been able to break (Spacek).  After this accident, however, Tesla changed it so that both the radar and camera sensors have the same level of priority when stopping the car to prevent an object from blending in with the background (Krisher).  This shows that the software engineers creating these systems have a huge responsibility.  With ample testing, however, these types of incidents should be easily avoidable making self-driving cars safer than the traditional car requiring a driver.Self-driving cars will create safer roadways for all.  They will allow attentive drivers the luxury of not worrying about inattentive drivers.  If properly designed, the cars will seamlessly fit in with the traffic system already in place.  Now, it is just a matter of time before self-driving vehicles become the norm as a safer alternative to traditional vehicles.