Governor Ron DeSantis and Autonomous Vehicles
In 2019, Governor Ron DeSantis signed a bill to promote autonomous vehicles. Now that he has won his second term as governor, what will happen with efforts to promote driverless vehicles. The bill placed Florida at the forefront of efforts to creating safer roadways and less vehicle congestion. After the signing of this bill, Senator Jeff Brandes stated that the transportation industry would experience great innovation, and that Florida was leading the way in policies to promote the implementation of self-driving vehicles, as well as vehicle powered on electric energy. As a result, it was in 2019 that Governor DeSantis signed a bill to invest in transportation technologies, with aims to lower motor vehicle accidents in line with the era of smart cities. The signing of this Bill was held at in Polk County, at a facility considered an epicenter in terms of mobility solutions through the research and creation of technology and strategies to develop autonomous vehicles. “We here in Florida are pioneering the most exciting innovations in transportation,” said Representative Jason Fischer. “This bill on self-driving cars will usher in a new era of smart cities that will not only expand our economy but increase road safety and decrease traffic congestion.” Meanwhile, the Florida Department of Transportation released the following statement: “I applaud the Governor for his continued commitment to invest in emerging transportation technologies,” said Florida Department of Transportation Secretary Kevin Thibault. “Autonomous vehicles are the way of the future and Florida is leading the charge through the research, testing and development of autonomous vehicles. And now with this bill signed into law by Governor DeSantis, Florida is ready to lead the nation with this innovative transportation advancement.”
Now that Florida voters have once again elected Ron DeSantis as their governor, it will be interesting to see how these initiatives move forward, and if driverless vehicles will be taking to Miami streets sooner than expected. In fact, Uber has launched its first driverless rideshare service vehicle, with much success. Autonomous vehicles will be tested at SunTrax’s highspeed facility, one of its kind in terms of test tracks for self-driving and fully automated cars. The Florida Department of Transportation and the Florida Turnpike are onboard with the initiative to create advanced mobility solutions to reduce accidents and make driving more time and cost efficient for Florida motorists.
Florida is currently ranked #1 in terms of motor vehicle collisions and wrongful death from car accidents. Governor DeSantis is aiming to turn that around by capitalizing on existing technologies and the growing trend to develop smart cities.
Less negligence behind the wheel?
Car accidents are among the most common type of everyday personal injury accident in Miami, with the number of car accidents close to 200,000 per year along Florida avenues, streets, and highways. The most common type of car accident involves rear-end collisions, in which a distracted driver does not notice another vehicle slowed for traffic, stopping at a red light, or giving wat to a pedestrian at a crosswalk. In this type of accident, autonomous vehicles, if functioning properly, would not be crashing into stopped or slowed vehicles. In other words, an autonomous vehicle and its software, is less likely to act negligently and cause an accident. Negligent driving is one of the many reasons why drivers crash into other vehicles or cause accidents. Negligent cellphone use while driving is soon to surpass drunk driving as the number one cause of motor vehicle accidents. In Miami, the accident lawyers at the Perazzo Law Firm, believe that autonomous vehicles would be able to do away with negligent driving. However, they may not be able to prevent being crashed into by a negligent driver. An autonomous vehicle would be safer in this sense and successful in lowering the number of car accidents in Miami and other big cities throughout Florida due to distracted drivers.
How can autonomous cars be safer than cars driven by humans?
As stated above, an autonomous vehicle is unlikely to get distracted by a text message or by an Instagram notification. Thus, when in a steady flow of traffic, the vehicle’s sensors would be fully responsible for reacting to the movement of other vehicles, pedestrians, animals, or moving objects. Autonomous vehicles will rely heavily on advanced technologies which will require intensive testing before they can replace humans behind the wheel. Regardless, this is just a few years away, as autonomous cars are all ready operating.