Will driverless cars be able to follow the language of driving

It’s an exceptionally common occurrence for drivers all over the world to use various hand signals and gestures while driving to communicate with other road users.

But with the increase of driverless cars on the road, there’s one question that needs answering – how will these driverless cars effectively communicate with human drivers?

We’re well aware that driverless cars have a sound knowledge of the rules of the road; they have a good understanding of how to drive safely and smartly, but are they likely to get confused when it comes to the many signals and gestures that drivers use on a daily basis?

One example that might help to put things into perspective is the use of headlights. When drivers flash their headlights it can mean a number of things; “your high beam is too bright”, “your headlights aren’t switched on” or it can even be a signal to let the other driver that you’re letting them go. It’s easy for humans to interpret exactly what these signals mean due to the context of the situation, however driverless cars may struggle to recognise what these signals mean.

As well as the old ‘flash your headlights’ trick, there’s also a number of other signs and signals that drivers may use to communicate with each other such as hand gestures, beeping your horns and using your hazard lights.

It can be argued that there could be a significant communication breakdown between human drivers and driverless cars as written communication also plays a large part in driving. Signs such as ‘baby on board’ are designed with the intention to encourage drivers to be much more cautious and careful when on the road. Can it be said that driverless cars may not be able to respond effectively to the various signs and signals that come with human drivers?

Whether you opt for a suave new driverless car or you prefer to play it safe with a traditional car such as the classic Skoda Fabia, make sure that you always abide by the rules of the road.


Photo Credit: Lexus

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