Fresno traffic defense attorney discusses new technology on the road

May 08, 2014

Starting in mid-September of this year, auto manufacturers will be allowed to use California roads for vehicle tests involving self-driving cars. After much deliberation, the DMV has come up with regulations on the testing of these vehicles. It's likely that at some point soon, they'll also issue rules to the general public.

Self-driving vehicles look like they'll be a part of our roadways. No longer just an element of futuristic sci-fi stories, we'll be seeing cars designed with different levels of autonomy take to the roads.

Their presence also poses various legal questions. To what extent will current traffic laws have to change in order to account for self-driving vehicles? The vehicles themselves are designed to comply with traffic laws and general road safety, but their use adds another dimension to traffic law.

For example, if the car begins to speed or break other traffic laws, who is responsible? One of the regulations enacted by the DMV requires that a human driver remain in the driver's seat. Does this mean that if the car abruptly malfunctions, human drivers will still be held responsible if they don't react quickly enough to override the vehicle? Will the manufacturer face possible traffic penalties?

As of now, people testing the vehicles will need to obtain a special permit beyond their driver's license by undergoing a special training program. Any accident involving such a vehicle needs to be reported to the DMV. The test drivers also need to report if they had to override the autonomous system for safety reasons.

An experienced Fresno traffic defense attorney will stay on top of any new regulations regarding this rapidly developing technology, and, as with any other kind of incident on the road, will be on hand to give you advice and assistance crafting a strong defense. Don't hesitate to contact us to discuss any traffic law troubles you've experienced.




Category: Traffic Law

Michael Mitchell

Michael Mitchell is a Fresno attorney who practices in the areas of DUI, personal injury & criminal law. Visit his Google+ profile.


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Michael E. Mitchell, at the Mitchell Law Group, Inc., is one of the top DUI defense attorneys in Fresno, California. He has over a decade of experience handling DUI cases throughout the Central Valley, including in Clovis, Madera, Tulare, Visalia. He is a certified field sobriety instructor and practitioner under the standards of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and is a member of the California DUI Lawyers Association. His advice and knowledge is, routinely, sought after by other attorneys practicing in the area of DUI defense. He is an expert in the area of DUI defense in both Federal, State, and on the Appellate level. If your looking for the best DUI Lawyer in Fresno to handle your case, give us a call today to see how we can put our knowledge to work for you.