Although self-driving cars might sound like something crazy out of a science fiction movie, Google is working hard to make them a true and undeniable reality. Other brands like BMW and Mercedes already launched self-driving features within their existing cars to keep pace with Google. If you’re still scratching your head over what exactly self-driving cars entail, read on.
The Inspiration for Self-Driving Automobiles
Traffic fatalities continue to occur in devastating numbers every year, totaling about 33,000 people annually. A significant number of these deaths are completely preventable and caused by nothing but human error: falling asleep at the wheel, texting and driving, driving under the influence, and so on. As traffic injuries and fatalities plague the country and keep law and emergency officers busier than they can handle, technology moguls are pushing for the advent of new self-driving technology that, they say, will make the roadways considerably safer.
How Do Self-Driving Cars Function?
If you think it sounds scary to rely upon a machine for your complete safety, you aren’t alone. But many proponents of self-driving cars argue that we already rely upon machines and computers for our safety, from trusting that the steering wheel will turn when you turn it to believing that your tires won’t start speeding up without your permission.
According to Google, their self-driving cars use map and sensor information to determine where the car is and where to go. The cars’ sensors can detect objects as far away as the length of two football fields and even categorize each object based on shape and movement pattern. After taking in all the information, Google’s software predicts what will happen next and choses a safe speed and trajectory accordingly.
Major Pros and Cons
Supporters of self-driving cars assert that computers would eliminate the 81 percent of crashes that occur due to human error, since the complex software can drive in a way that decreases the chances of car accidents. Not only would this save human lives, but it would improve traffic congestion, minimize commute time, and maximize gas mileage. On a more modest line of reasoning, self-driving cars can make time more valuable for the would-be driver, who can now sit back and read, finish work, or safely make calls or text.
On the other hand, opponents of self-driving cars remind others that the cost of implementing this new technology may not be within reach, and properly securing such technology against breeches and infiltration would require enormous resources. It will also cause issues in the St petersburg auto repair industry because self driving cars won’t require as much maintenance.
We do live in the age of technology, so only time will tell just how far self-driving cars go.
In today’s modern world of complex technology, identity theft is a growing concern as more and more people fall victim to criminals using their names and financial information to make illegal purchases. Another form of fraud that is not as well known, but certainly every bit as concerning, is VIN fraud. This is the number one cause of high risk insurance in Ontario, Canada.
VIN fraud occurs when someone replaces or changes a vehicle’s identification number (VIN) with the direct goal of misleading consumers and law enforcement officers. It’s most common for VIN fraud to exist in connection with vehicle theft. The two most frequently seen forms of VIN fraud are VIN cloning and VIN altering.
When a criminal clones a VIN, he applies a VIN from a similar and legally registered vehicle onto his damaged or stolen vehicle in order to cover its identity. Through VIN cloning, criminals can sell stolen vehicles to buyers who believe they are getting a legitimate car and pay accordingly. A criminal can also steal a car and continue driving it using the cloned VIN without being detected.
This form of VIN fraud is growing in frequency because it is hard for law enforcement to detect. Criminals can find VINs on the Internet, in windows of vehicles in parking lots, or even from recently salvaged cards in junk yards.
VIN altering, on the other hand, is defined as purposefully removing, destroying, or tampering with the VIN on a vehicle. Most states consider it a felony offense worthy of jail time. Criminals use VIN altering for the same purposes they use VIN cloning, but it doesn’t require finding a legitimate vehicle’s VIN as a swap. Beware of the VIN # because if you purchase a car and get Ontario insurance quotes without being sure, it can turn into a nightmare.
Protect Yourself From VIN Fraud
You don’t want to become a victim of any form of VIN fraud, so use extra caution when purchasing an automobile from a private seller and run a VIN check on any car you’re interesting in buying. You should also ask your car insurer to check for possible clones in the database and thoroughly inspect the VIN yourself when buying a new vehicle.
If you have an antique or classic car, chances are it’s your baby. Regardless of whether it’s on show, being restored, or sitting in your driveway, it needs the best protection possible. Such an important, perfectly restored showpiece deserves more than standard insurance to cover all possible threats.
Antique Car Insurance Eligibility
Standard car insurance policies typically can’t cover the high value of a classic car, which may lead you in search of a policy specifically for classic cars. But does your car qualify?
To qualify as a classic, your car should be ten or more years old and of rare or special historical interest because of fine workmanship or limited production. An antique car meets all the same specifications except it must be at least 25 years old. In addition, your car can only be used on a limited basis like exhibitions, club activities, and parades. You need to have restored, maintained, and/or preserved your car. In other words, you can’t treat it like the Subaru you drive to work. This car is in a league of its own, and the insurance will reflect that.
Look For Perks
Each insurance company will offer a variety of different perks to persuade you to use their services. Some will offer a hefty collector’s discount if you insure more than one vehicle with them. Others make exceptions to the restricted use clause and allow you to drive the car on a regular basis. You can even find insurers who offer discounts if you are a member of a certain Classics club or compete in shows. By aligning your insurance company with your priorities and lifestyle, you can save a great deal of money.
The Bottom Line
Regular car insurance is based on a depreciating value, but collectible car insurance requires full coverage for everything you have invested in your vehicle as it appreciates.