Eau Claire, Wis. (WEAU) -- Imagine driving down the road, eyes forward, and you are in the driver's seat, but your hands off the wheel.
"I definitely think it's pretty interesting, interesting concept," said Drew Ruenger, a driver and father of two kids.
He is seeing the video for the first time today. An autonomous car as it is known, one that drives itself using cameras, GPS, and lasers. It is made by Google and now legal on streets in Nevada and California.
Even though one of Ruenger's kids may be old enough to get their license by the time it is mainstream, he sees the benefits as a parent of one day driving hands and feet free.
"It would help us multi-task, if we were not driving the actual car," he added.
More attention for his girls, same story for Tiffany Hubner with her girls. She says it would be easier to pay attention to them in the backseat.
But she is not sure if she would want to give it a go, right away.
"It's really scary but it's kind of neat too," she said.
Google says driving the car is as easy as putting it into self-driving mode, if you want control, you just push the pedals or grab the wheel. But not everyone is sold on its safety.
"What if there's a deer coming, we live in Wisconsin, how do you know you're not going to hit a deer," said Clare Sievert, a student at UW-Eau Claire.
She also questions it being a good sober cab home, worried if that person had to manually take over.
She says she would not want this type of car; saying when you are behind the wheel, driving safely is your responsibility.
"You have a license for reason, if you're not going to drive, how are you gonna keep up with your driving skills?" She said.
E-MAIL FROM GOOGLE:
- Over 300,000 self-driven miles, without an accident.
- We're transforming mobility by making driving safer, more enjoyable, and more efficient.
- In a year commuters sit in their cars for an average of 215 hours, twice as long as they spend on vacation.
Design and Technical Details
- Information from onboard sensors and a computer is combined with 3D map data to drive safely almost anywhere.
- Cars that see 360 degrees at all times never get distracted or switch the radio station.
- Test vehicles contain multiple radars, a laser scanner, a camera, a GPS, and other equipment.
- Turn on self-driving mode in supported areas with a button, and instantly take back control at any time by grabbing the wheel or using the pedals.
- Picture-perfect coastline? Grab the wheel and enjoy. Stuck in traffic? Let the car do the work for you.
- A screen visualization shows the car's view of the world—a complete picture of the road from all directions, all the time.