Proponents of autonomous vehicle technology claim that self-driving cars could virtually eliminate human error on the roads, but questions about the reliability of these systems have been raised in Connecticut and around the country after a self-driving vehicle was involved in an accident that claimed the life of a pedestrian. An SUV that was being used by the ride-hailing company Uber to test autonomous systems struck and killed a woman as she stepped into the road, and video footage taken from inside the SUV suggests that the person behind the wheel may have been distracted at the time.
For many people in Connecticut and across the United States, one of the most appealing factors of autonomous vehicle technology is the way that it could help improve safety and reduce the number of traffic accidents. Since interest in these technologies is so safety focused, there is a high level of interest and publicity when accidents do happen involving driverless vehicles. In March 2018, a pedestrian fatality in Arizona involving a self-driving car received widespread news coverage. One professor believes that it is the influence of humans themselves that limits the safety of autonomous vehicles.