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What Happens if a Driverless Car Causes a Pedestrian Accident?

What Happens if a Driverless Car Causes a Pedestrian Accident?

It’s not an experience you likely expect to have in your lifetime: being injured as a pedestrian because you were struck by a vehicle with no driver. The idea of autonomous vehicles traveling our roads in large numbers is science-fiction, right?

That might have been the case once. However, advances in driverless car technology have rapidly transformed what was once sci-fi into our current reality. In some parts of the country, Waymo, the taxi service operating a fleet of driverless cars, is already helping those in need of a ride get from Point A to Point B.

It may not be long before the rest of the country catches up. Even here in Boston, lawmakers, urban planners, and others with a stake in such matters are having very real discussions about how the city will integrate driverless taxi and ride-sharing services into the day-to-day lives of citizens.

Unfortunately, this technology is not perfect. There have already been instances of autonomous vehicles striking pedestrians. This means it is possible that not too long from now, you might have to worry that a driverless car will hit you while you’re crossing the street in Boston.

Hopefully, that will never occur. If it does, though, you need to understand what you can do to pursue the compensation for which you may be eligible.

Recovering Compensation When Driverless Vehicles Strike Pedestrians

Although these matters are technically theoretical at this point, most experts would agree that if a driverless car that’s owned and operated by a ride-sharing service injures a pedestrian, the victim would be able to seek compensation by filing a claim to collect from the insurance of the company whose fleet the vehicle belongs to. This is similar to the way you would typically seek compensation now if you were struck by an Uber or Lyft.

Regardless, it will still be wise for victims of such accidents to enlist the help of pedestrian accident lawyers. It’s highly likely the insurer of a company offering taxi services via driverless cars will be disinclined to offer an injured victim the full amount of compensation they may be requesting when they file a claim. Insurance companies often attempt to minimize how much they end up paying to claimants in these circumstances.

The issue may become even more complex if the company attempts to argue that a victim would not have been injured were it not for their own negligence. An insurer might suggest that driverless cars are less prone to human error. Therefore, if a pedestrian was struck by such a vehicle, it must have been a result of their own carelessness. Such a victim will need representation from skilled attorneys to counter these arguments.

Again, you probably don’t think this is an issue that will ever impact your life, but with technology quickly developing, that might not always be the case. Regardless, if you’re ever injured in any type of pedestrian accident in Boston, whether with a real driver or an autonomous vehicle, our team at Colucci, Colucci & Marcus, P.C. is on hand to help you pursue compensation for your medical bills and other such losses. Learn more about what we can do for you by contacting us online today to schedule a free consultation or by calling us at 617-917-3917.