Although eco-friendly and convenient, there are many dangers posed by electric cars. Some of the risks are due to features such as self-driving or the hazardous materials used in the car batteries. Electric vehicles can cause serious accidents especially when drivers are distracted or negligent.
Electric Vehicle Accidents with Pedestrians
Usually, a pedestrian or cyclist can hear a car or truck coming before crossing the street. However, unlike most cars, electric vehicles make little to no sound when driving. Silence may be desirable for drivers and passengers, but the lack of sound can be dangerous for pedestrians who do not sense the vehicle approaching.
These surprises may end in serious personal property damage, injuries, or even death, especially if the driver of the electric car is distracted. Seniors, children, and people with disabilities face even greater risks from these accidents. The most dangerous times for pedestrians are when an electric car is stopping, slowing, starting in traffic, backing up, or leaving a driveway or parking spot. The risk of a collision in these scenarios is double that of the normal rate.
Autopilot Gone Wrong
Quiet engines are not the only threat electric vehicles pose to pedestrians. New “Autopilot” and “Full Self Driving” (FSD) features in brands such as Tesla may also be cause for concern. Tesla Autopilot and Full Self Driving are not capable of safely controlling the electric cars in all normal driving circumstances, yet some drivers have been driving hands free for prolonged periods or falling asleep at the wheel. Treating electric cars as autonomous vehicles can be dangerous to everyone on the road.
Battery Dangers for Electrical Vehicles
Another potential danger posed by electric cars comes from the batteries that power the vehicles. Lithium-ion batteries are used to power the motors and internal electronics of many electric vehicles. If exposed to any amount of water, including moisture in the air, the lithium begins to react and get hot. At a hot enough temperature, the lithium will ignite and burn. If the battery is damaged in a collision, any people in or near the vehicle could get seriously burned.
Consult an Attorney for Electric Car Accidents
Electric car accidents pose serious risks and can cause significant damage in the event of a crash. If you or someone you love has been injured in an accident with an electric vehicle, call the attorneys at O’Connor, Acciani & Levy for a consultation.