Whether we believe it or not, self-driving cars are in our near future, and the rate of innovation in this sector appears to be increasing. With the implementation of self-driving cars and commercial carriers, many insurers are wondering how will autonomous cars affect the insurance claims process? The implementation of autonomous vehicles will dramatically impact how insurers handle claims and how they assess the risks posed by their insureds.
FAULT DETERMINATIONS WILL CHANGE WITH THE IMPLEMENTATION OF AUTONOMOUS VEHICLES.
Georgia, unlike some of states in the U.S., is a fault state. In Georgia, we determine financial liability for a car accident based upon fault for the accident. Therefore, the determination of how we assess fault in an accident with an autonomous car is an important (indeed, crucial) determination. Fault is a concern for many drivers and insurance companies. The Association of British Insurers (ABI) is currently looking to formulate a set of international standards for collecting certain data, should an accident occur. The following data would be calculated 30 seconds prior to crash until 15 seconds afterwards:
- a GPS record of the time and location of the incident confirmation of whether the vehicle was in autonomous or manual mode
if in autonomous mode,
- whether the vehicle was parking or driving when the vehicle went into autonomous mode,
- and when the driver last interacted with the system any driver activity such as braking or steering whether the driver's seat was occupied, and whether the seat belt was fastened.
This information will be helpful in determining not only whether fault lies with the manufacturer or the driver, but also helps expedite the insurance claim process. Insurers would be likely to gather monies from manufacturers in a timely manner, as well as insure that consumers continue to receive low insurance premiums and safely made vehicles. The ABI hopes to get a system in place so that there can be a universal collection of data that protects drivers from unnecessary blame and to remedy the issues that many people are having with the new technology of automated vehicles being on the road.