Will autonomous vehicles be game-changers for the way elderly people live their lives? At least one research team is looking into it and it’s not as cut and dry as it seems.
Dr. Shuo Li, an expert in intelligent transportation systems at Newcastle University, and Phil Blythe, a professor there, say while AVs might allow elderly people to avoid some of the safety measures they take now, including not driving in bad weather, avoiding some turns, and staying off busier roads, they also struggle to take back control of a driverless car when necessary. At 60 miles per hour, their study found, elderly passengers needed 10 more car lengths than younger people to assume control of the vehicle. So while AVs might make life easier sometimes, they may also pose extra challenges.