Daily Management Review

Insurers Likely to be Upset by Rise of Self Driving Cars: Study


Insurers Likely to be Upset by Rise of Self Driving Cars: Study
A new car insurance research finds that the revenues of the industry could be seriously impacted due to the fact that self-driving cars and automatic safety features would significantly to reduce the number of road accidents in the future.
A global study of road accidents and user-based insurance by consulting firm PTOLEMUS found that v would be reduced by 30 percent by 2030 since there will be 380 million semi, highly or fully autonomous vehicles on the roads which would reduce accidents. This reduction in accidents would lead to reduced insurance premiums.
Due to declining insurance premiums which would depend on how widely autonomous vehicles are adopted by drivers, the car insurance market could shrink by up to 40 percent by 2030, the study noted.
According to figures from the Association of British Insurers (ABI), income from premiums in the U.S. totalled $1.28 trillion in 2014 and was $350 billion in the U.K and therefore even a small decline would translate into a very significant amount of money.
"The emergence of autonomous vehicles may appear as a remote risk today. However, this is a collision insurance companies must face and the magnitude of its impact is extremely high," said Frederic Bruneteau, managing director of PTOLEMUS, in a press release.
Thirteen U.K. car insurers, including Aviva, have grouped together to form the ABI and address concerns as the insurers in the U.K. are carefully considering the challenges presented by self-driving vehicles.
"Developments in autonomous driving are increasingly being seen in new cars – from autonomous braking to self-parking. Insurance is a key part of these developments and it's important that insurers work together to understand the impacts," a spokesperson from insurer Aviva told CNBC via email.
Who would be held liable after an accident involving one or more autonomous vehicles is one of the major impacts as identified by the ABI. Would it be the driver, the manufacturer, or the systems developer of a self-driving car?

However, the ABI is not planning to stop autonomous vehicles getting on the road.

"Contrary to what some people might expect, insurers are not standing in the way of this development but actively looking to support progress and innovation. Truly driverless cars have the potential to dramatically reduce deaths and injuries on the roads and could revolutionize what we think of as public transport," said James Dalton, director of general insurance policy at the ABI, in a press release.
"The role of motor insurance in such a future will be very different to what it is today, but insurance will be part of the picture," Dalton said.

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