The following is great news.
Google and Mercedes told us, if their technology is at fault once it becomes commercially available, they’ll accept responsibility and liability. But all involved expect fewer crashes as the technology evolves.
And in an announcement before a talk he’s planning to give with the Swedish Embassy today, Volvo chief Håkan Samuelsson said that the Swedish company would take the blame, too (emphasis mine):
Mr Samuelsson will address a select audience at a seminar entitled “A Future with Self Driving Cars – Is it Safe?” at the House of Sweden in Washington DC, during which he will emphasize that the introduction of self-driving cars on the world’s roads will happen more quickly than many lawmakers anticipated.
He will urge regulators to work closely with car makers to solve controversial outstanding issues such as questions over legal liability in the event that a self-driving car is involved in a crash or hacked by a criminal third party.
Mr Samuelsson will clearly state Volvo’s position on both of these contentious issues.
He will say Volvo will accept full liability whenever one if its cars is in autonomous mode, making it one of the first car makers in the world to make such a promise.
He will add that Volvo regards the hacking of a car as a criminal offense.