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How new technology is impacting personal injury law

Not long ago an Uber self-driving car made the headlines after it crashed into an oncoming vehicle, but it’s not just driverless cars that are causing a stir. Everything from hover-boards to drones and e-cigarettes are raising interesting questions about personal injury law.

As new technological developments become more and more important to our lives, they should be making everyday tasks simpler. Accessing endless amounts of data using a pocket-sized smartphone, tracking our fitness and day-to-day activity with a smartwatch, using high-end gadgets in the home and kitchen etc…

But what if some of these new technologies actually make life more dangerous?

For some, this could well be the case. Driverless cars taking to the roads, drones cruising the skies, people speeding around the streets on hover-boards etc… all have the potential to cause harm to users and others. So what exactly do these new technologies mean for personal injury law?

Self driving cars

A lot of tech and car companies are currently racing to get fully autonomous ‘self driving’ cars on the road. Google’s driverless car ‘division’ Waymo is currently testing cars in four cities in the US and have driven a total of 2 million miles between them.

While self-driving technology certainly has potential to prevent collisions caused by drunk driving and other types of risks, they also have the potential for accidents – and despite their impressive safety records, the problem with a self-driving car crash is: who would be liable for a claim? Would you make a claim against the driver/operator or the manufacturer of the malfunctioning vehicle?

See also: Who is at fault if a driverless car has an accident?

 

Hover-boards

Hoverboards were all the rage a couple of years ago, until they started making headlines for all the wrong reasons. First of all they were banned from being used in any public place, due to the obvious health and safety concerns associated with people riding around in busy streets. Then many of them started exploding due to faulty batteries, which led to a huge recall of products.

The fate of hoverboards is an important lesson into how we willingly let new technology into our lives and homes before the correct health and safety procedures have been carried out on the products.

 

Drones

Drones are one of the fastest growing technological trends of our time, and with ever-growing numbers of drone operators flying them the number of near-misses with aeroplanes, humans, power lines and other objects is on the rise.

Many experts believe that it is only a matter of time before an amateur-controlled drone causes a tragedy, with regulation not keeping up with the pace of the trend.

 

E-cigarettes

E-cigarettes have already started to have an impact on the world of personal injury, with the number of compensation claims for injuries associated with exploding e-cigarettes on the increase in recent years.

Like hoverboards, the case of electric cigarettes is a lesson in how fast-moving technology can outstrip the rate of regulation and safeguarding, which can ultimately leave consumers at risk of unsafe and faulty products.

See also: Product liability claims – a guide to making a claim for defective products

 

What to do if you are injured by technology

If you have suffered an injury – however it was sustained, if it was not your fault then you could be entitled to make a claim for compensation.

To find out more about how CL Legal can help you make a claim, get in touch today using the options below…

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