New U.S. Transportation Secretary Doesn’t Seem To Know Anything About Autonomous Cars

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Photo: AP Here’s Elaine Chao, the new U.S. Transportation Secretary who is concerned about the comfort level people have toward autonomous cars and trucks, talking about self-driving cars today:”We have now self-driving automobiles. We have level-two self-driving vehicles. They can own on the highway, follow the white lines on the highway, and there’s really no requirement for anyone to be seated and controlling

any of the instruments.”Come again?When Chao expressed that she comprehends people need to much better comprehend self-driving tech, it was a show for optimism; just one-in-four Americans rely on the idea of a robotic cars and truck right now. However this remark? This doesn’t jibe with reality. Here’s the full quote from her interview on Fox Business, conveyed through Verge:

We have now self-driving cars and trucks. We have level-two self-driving cars and trucks. They can own on the highway, follow the white lines on the highway, and there’s really no requirement for anybody to be seated and managing any of the instruments. And now we’re likewise seeing self-driving trains that are possible, self-driving planes.Chao’s”level 2

” remark is a recommendation to the Society of Automotive engineers scale for autonomy. Level two– best referred to as “semi-autonomous”– is what’s on the road today, like Tesla’s Auto-pilot feature. There isn’t really, as Chao communicates, “self-driving cars” being mass-produced and offered. That would be level five on the chart (which you can see below) or maybe, level four, which a human chauffeur is still needed in case there’s, state, bad weather.

What’s much more disturbing, the Edge reported that Chao repeated her point later with a lot more strange remark, stating: “a level two [cars and truck] is most likely more secure than a level five or a level four self-driving vehicle.”

Possibly that’s her subjective view of the scenario, however it’s virtually a universally-held perspective amongst those developing self-governing tech that a fully self-driving vehicle is safer than partial-autonomy. More than 90 percent of mishaps are credited to human mistake, so a rollout of fully-autonomous cars would, presumably, cause that number to drop. (Though there’s plenty of concern about on the road.)

At a time when automakers are looking for assistance on how policies will oversee the application of fully-autonomous cars, it’s probably not much convenience to know the leading transport chief in the U.S. does not seem to understand the scenario all too well.


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