A Regulator’s Refreshing View During the Tesla Investigation

The auto-industry “cannot wait for perfect” when it comes to self-driving technology, according to Mark Rosekind, the head of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Writing for The Wall Street Journal, John D. Stoll explains that despite recent criticism of Tesla following a fatal accident involving the company’s Autopilot feature, the NHTSA’s main objective is to reduce the total number of traffic fatalities.

Given the 35,000 that occurred in 2015, it is unsurprising that Stoll quotes Rosekind as saying, “We should be desperate for anything we can find to save people’s lives.”

While the NHTSA is investigating that fatal Tesla crash, it is encouraging to see a regulator take a holistic view towards the impact of innovation. Rather than following a precautionary principle that focuses on the worst case scenario, Rosekind, as Stroll portrays him, recognizes that autonomous and semi-autonomous vehicles could be safer than traditional vehicles.

Furthermore, it seems that Rosekind understands that limiting consumer adoption of this technology through regulations and other governmental delays could ultimately leave more lives at risk.

More Blog Posts

04-01-2021 07:38am

Order and chaos: Embracing an emergent order mindset

We are surrounded by order that occurs without design or control on all sides. Yet we rarely think about this order.

Read more

03-24-2021 08:16am

Supporting the emerging generation of tech leaders

An employer and associate perspective from the Emerging Tech Policy Leaders Program, which received 90 applications for its first cohort.

Read more

03-18-2021 08:42am

Where should K-12 go next?

We ask two of our partners in K-12 education to tell us what they’ve learned in the last year, and what they think should happen next.   

Read more

Sign up for updates