Auto club says motorists should learn about these devices.
Towson, Md (KM) Many cars have new technologies that go under the names of AutoPilot and ProPilot, but they do have limitations.
Ragina Ali, Government and Public Affairs Manager for AAA Mid-Atlantic, says some auto dealers have hyped these new technologies as a way to sell cars. But Ali says motorists need to understand that these devices assist drivers when they’re behind the wheel; they don’t do the driving for them. “Some of these things are called AutoPilot or ProPilot giving motorists perhaps the misconception that they don’t have to be fully engaged, and that the vehicle will kind of take care of itself. That ‘s certainly not the case,” she says.
If you purchase such a car, AAA has developed a PLAN, which is an acronym for Purpose, Limitation, Allow and Never. Ali says motorists should learn the purpose of these devices on their car, and that includes reading the owner’s manual and going to the manufacturer’s website for more information.
Limitations means understanding what this technology cannot do. “Do not make assumptions about automation,” says Ali. “An active driving system should not be confused with a self-driving one.”
Allow is allowing time for safe on-road testing of this technology so motorists know exactly how it works in real-time driving situations.
“Never rely on it,” Ali says. “Although you may have these technologies in your car, we don’t want motorists to rely on it. Instead, act as if your vehicle does not have it, with the driver always prepared to retake control of the vehicle if needed.”
Ali, again, reminds motorists that these device assist motorists; they do not drive their cars for them.
By Kevin McManus