SACRAMENTO, CA — Today as the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) continues to build the regulatory “roadway” for autonomous vehicles, the California voice of the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America, reminds the DMV that insurers will play a key role in making driverless cars a reality. ACIC submitted suggested amendments to DMV related to data collection, insurer access to data and clarity of insurance requirements.
“Autonomous vehicles have the potential to improve mobility in society and reduce the number of accidents, injuries and deaths on our roads,” said Armand Feliciano, ACIC vice president. “Insurance is a key component of repairing cars and protecting drivers and passengers so it must be factored into the world of autonomous vehicles. The information ACIC is requesting from DMV is vital to handling claims and developing insurance products for this new era in transportation.”
ACIC’s requested amendments address three issues:
First, ACIC requested the DMV provide a clear standard to address the issue of accessing data after an accident or collision involving an autonomous vehicle. Insurance companies assess risk based on historical performance, so access to that kind of data is essential to allow insurers to develop new insurance products and develop risk based pricing for those products.
Second, the data from an accident involving an autonomous vehicle is necessary to determine liability. When the vehicle is doing the driving, data related to speed, steering, braking and objects detected by sensors or video cameras will be as important as getting a statement from a human driver to determine what happened and promptly compensate accident victims.
Finally, the DMV should clearly specify the type of insurance required and who has to carry the coverage under the regulations to be consistent with the enabling statute, SB 1298. Currently, it is unclear what insurance is required for self-insurance or what limit applies.
“We are on the precipice of a new world with self-driving cars, but the access to the information necessary to assess risk and determine liability in accidents must continue to be available to insurers in order to protect drivers and passengers.”