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Surprising Erie survey on self-driving cars, distracted driving released

A survey commissioned by Erie Insurance has found that nearly 60 percent of drivers believe that self-driving vehicles will eventually eliminate distracted driving. If autonomous cars do rid our streets of distracted drivers, it would dramatically reduce the numbers of motor vehicle accidents and related injuries and fatalities.

The president of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety says that distracted drivers are going to continue to be a problem on America's streets, however. “The term ‘self-driving car’ suggests I can hop in my car, enter a destination and have it take me from point A to point B," he said. "But that car doesn’t exist yet."

Erie's hometown insurance company's survey is an attempt to understand what people think now of self-driving vehicles and distracted drivers. According to a recent auto industry publication article, the survey indicates that many people are ready to make use of technology that is still years away.

Respondents were asked to name activities they are likely to engage in while they are in self-driving vehicles. Their most common responses are listed below:

  • Talk on the phone: 45 percent
  • Send and receive texts: 37 percent
  • Check emails: 34 percent
  • Read: 27 percent
  • Watch videos: 21 percent
  • Sleep: 19 percent
  • Play games: 11 percent
  • Meditate: 10 percent
  • Romantic interludes: 7 percent (only 3 percent of women said they would do this)
  • Drink alcohol: 5 percent
  • Exercise: 2 percent

Another interesting bit from the survey: a third of respondents said one of the major advantages of self-driving vehicles will be that people can get home safely even if they are intoxicated.

A spokesperson for the insurer said that while some people might have made some light-hearted responses to the survey, he hopes that people remember that right now all drivers have to "keep your eyes on the road, your hands on the wheel, and your mind on what you are doing.”

An attorney experienced in helping accident injury victims can help you pursue full and fair compensation for all damages. Contact Quinn, Buseck, Leemhuis, Toohey & Kroto, Inc. for more information.

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