Autonomous vehicles might not be on the immediate horizon

While Colorado residents might anticipate the day when driverless cars will be widely available, it may not come as quickly as they might expect. There are several issues that must first be addressed before self-driving cars can be offered in mass production. Other factors may also make people less willing to purchase these vehicles when they are available.

Before driverless cars can be released to the public, state and federal lawmakers along with regulatory agencies will first need to draft new laws and regulations that specifically govern driverless vehicles. The process of drafting and passing these new laws and rules can take years. There are also thorny issues of liability that will need to be determined, including the party or parties that could be held financially responsible if a self-driving car is at fault in an accident and what type of insurance will need to be purchased.

Consumers are generally only willing to pay set amounts for advancements in technology. If driverless cars have higher prices, consumers are likelier to opt for traditional options. This has been shown with electric cars. Even though electric vehicles are competitively priced over their vehicle life as compared to other cars, fewer consumers opt to purchase them because the upfront costs are higher.

Car accidents may still happen once driverless cars are widely available. There may be issues during the transition period when self-driving cars are sharing the roads with traditional vehicles. Accidents may also be caused by defects in the equipment, software hacks and weather conditions. When people are the victims of car crashes that are not their fault, experienced personal injury attorneys might be able to offer them assistance. Attorneys may work to determine the party or parties who should be held financially responsible and then recover damages in amounts that will fairly compensate their clients for all of their losses.

4 apps to prevent you from driving while distracted

Distracted driving is a much larger issue than most people realize. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that every day, over 1,000 people suffer injuries as a result of distracted driving. Approximately nine people die every day as a result.

One of the biggest causes for distraction is smartphones. Some drivers do not see the harm in quickly responding to a text or looking something up. However, taking your eyes off the road for a few seconds can still lead to an accident. If you do not know if you can trust yourself to not look at your phone, then consider downloading one of the following apps to prevent you from becoming tempted.

1. Live2Txt

All you have to do is turn this app on before you start driving and you will not receive any texts or calls until you turn it back off. In the event someone texts you while the app is on, he or she will receive an automatic message stating you cannot respond because you are behind the wheel.

2. Drive First

Created by Sprint, this app automatically turns itself on once you start traveling at a certain speed. That means you do not have to worry about forgetting to activate it. If you need to use a map while driving, then you can still access one of those apps, but texts do not come through.

3. SafeDrive

Do you feel like earning rewards for safe driving? The SafeDrive app automatically turns itself on once you are moving above a certain speed limit. You then start earning points toward discounts offered by various companies that have partnered with the app.

4. Focus

Focus provides you with gentle reminders throughout your drive to not look at your phone. It activates on its own once you start traveling. To stay on the app’s good side, you will want to make sure you stay off your phone while you are on the road.

The various factors involved in truck accidents

Colorado motorists might be surprised to find out that there are many factors that contribute to the rising number of accidents involving big trucks. For example, 70 percent of accidents involving big rigs are actually caused by car drivers. In many of these accidents, whether caused by the car or the truck driver, human error is involved.

The U.S. Department of Labor estimates that there are 475,000 accidents involving large trucks each year. As a result of these accidents, there are about 5,000 fatalities and 140,000 injuries. The perception is that truck drivers usually cause these incidents through aggressive driving. According to the data, however, distracted driving and speeding by the other drivers are the main contributing factors in these truck accidents.

In accidents caused by the truck drivers, driver fatigue seems to be a major contributing factor as most accidents occur on Thursdays and Fridays. This is when drivers who work a Monday-to-Friday week are most exhausted. Fatigue can lead to human errors that result in injuries and death. In addition, location and time of the accident is important. A surprisingly high number of incidents involving trucks happen on major roads during the hours of 6 a.m. and 3 p.m. In 2015, 53 percent of fatalities in truck accidents took place on major roads where there is a bigger chance of speeding.

For residents who are involved in truck accidents and become injured, there is the possibility of filing a personal injury claim to seek compensation for losses. If a victim is considering this option, they might seek the assistance of a lawyer who can help with negotiations and gathering evidence.