Safety must be a priority in the development of automated driving
Peter Kronberg, safety director at Volvo Group, outlines some of the progress and the challenges for automated driving
Automated driving holds promise of a revolutionary new way of providing transport and mobility. Indeed, the added value in improved productivity and efficiency that can be extracted in commercial transport operations appears to be substantial. But, the question of the impact of automation on road safety tends to divide the public in two camps — one lauding the life-saving potential, the other envisioning a future of self-aware vehicles running wild, causing death and destruction. So, where are we heading? Well, I believe the reality of the challenges involved is becoming apparent as more automation pilots are deployed and experience accumulates. Improving road safety on a system-wide level will prove challenging. Yet, under favourable circumstances, automation concepts are showing safety potential. Favourable is a key word here. The vast majority of incidents and crashes involve human behaviour. It is easy, then, to suppose that taking the human out of the loop will reduce crashes c...