As more technology is incorporated into today’s vehicles, the vision of driverless taxis and cars may become reality. However, insurers say repairing cars has become more expensive because of collision avoidance technology in newer vehicle models. It is predicted that the rising cost of each repair could be more than offset by a lower number of accidents as cars become safer. In the United States, according to one study, total losses from auto accidents could decline by 63% by 2050, wiping $122 billion off the cost of claims. Over the long term, there could be a structural decline in claims and lower premiums, though it is unclear what effect technology has had on auto claim frequency. Meanwhile, when an accident involves a semi-autonomous or fully-autonomous vehicle, it is unclear who should cover the costs. Some insurance executives and government officials say it would be a mistake to turn vehicle insurance into a product liability, especially as roads will be filled with a mixture of autonomous and semi-autonomous vehicles for years to come.
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