Canadian Underwriter

Two-thirds of polled Canadians do not trust self-driving vehicles, but think there are benefits in the future: CAA

April 18, 2016   by Canadian Underwriter

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Canadians are wary of driverless cars, with nearly two-thirds saying they would not trust a vehicle to drive itself while they are in it, according to new research released on Monday by the Canadian Automobile Association (CAA).

driverlessCAA said that 63% of Canadians polled indicated that they would not trust a vehicle to drive itself while they are in it, stating concerns such as vehicle hacking, theft of data generated by the vehicle and accountability in the event of an accident. The results are based on a survey of 2,090 representative Canadians, CAA said in a press release, noting that a probability sample of the same size would yield a margin of error of ±2.2%, 19 times out of 20.

Despite their doubts today, Canadians still believe there are benefits to driverless cars in the future, such as improved accessibility for people with mobility issues and fewer road safety incidents due to reduced human error. In fact, more than half (57%) of Canadians said they think this technology will advance to a point where they would fully trust a driverless car in the next 10 years.

“Canadians clearly see the potential,” said Jeff Walker, vice president of public affairs for CAA National, in the release. “We are just not there yet.”

The public opinion research was done in conjunction with the Conference Board of Canada’s conference, titled Automated Vehicles: Planning the Next Disruptive Technology, being held on Tuesday and Wednesday in Toronto.

CAA is a federation of nine clubs providing over 6.2 million members with emergency roadside service, complete automotive and travel services, member savings and comprehensive insurance services.

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