About to lose your license! Afraid to drive! Maybe self driving cars are the answer for seniors and anyone who is uncomfortable getting behind the wheel! Baby boomers are retiring in droves and are still driving. In about 5 years, Google and others feel that the technology and the laws will be ready for main stream autonomous driving! This coincides with the older boomers nearing the time when driving becomes a problem. There could be a large demand from this market segment. In fact after age 70, the accident rate begins to climb and at age 80 the accident rate is the same as rookie teenagers. Maybe self driving cards will change retirement, cause fewer accidents and fewer people will die in accidents.

Self Driving Cars will Change Retirement

There is still a way to go yet. The software needs to be perfected to handle just about any situation. Initially drivers will need to be prepared to take over in special situations, however there is a lot of concern about this. How alert will drivers be after using a self driven car for some time. Initially they will pay attention, but after many uneventful rides or longer trips attentions spans will wonder and the car will need to deal with emergencies by itself which is the long term plan.

Another issues will be the difficulty that many people have in giving up control to a machine. Even boomers who should not be driving will still have this issue. Control is a big thing for many people. They just feel more secure when they are in control of a machine.

Perhaps five years is a bit ambitious, since the technology may be worked out, but it may take longer to work out licensing issues for the owners / operators. Then there is the liability issue when an accident occurs. Who is at fault, the operator of the car, the person who wrote the software or the sensors that perhaps did not do their job. A lot more to come but at least there is hope for the aging boomer population.