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数百起车祸背后,特斯拉等先进驾驶系统汽车安全性引担忧

Tesla Autopilot and Other Driver-Assist Systems Linked to Hundreds of Crashes
数百起车祸背后,特斯拉等先进驾驶系统汽车安全性引担忧

Nearly 400 crashes in the United States in 10 months involved cars using advanced driver-assistance technologies, the federal government’s top auto-safety regulator disclosed Wednesday.

联邦政府最高汽车安全监管机构周三披露,在过去10个月里,美国有近400起车祸涉及使用先进驾驶辅助技术的汽车。

The findings are part of a sweeping effort by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to determine the safety of advanced driving systems as they become increasingly commonplace.

这些发现来自美国国家公路交通安全管理局(简称NHTSA)为确定先进驾驶系统安全性而展开的一项大范围调研,因为这种系统正变得越来越普遍。
 

特斯拉Autopilot是美国国家公路交通安全管理局审查的先进驾驶辅助系统之一。

In 392 incidents cataloged by the agency from July 1 of last year through May 15, six people died and five were seriously injured. Teslas operating with Autopilot, the more ambitious Full Self Driving mode or any of their associated component features were in 273 crashes. Five of those Tesla crashes were fatal.

从去年7月1日到今年5月15日,在该机构录得的392起事件中,六人死亡,五人重伤。273起事故涉及使用“自动辅助驾驶”功能、更为彻底的“全自动驾驶”模式或任何与其相关的组件功能。此类特斯拉事故中有五起导致了死亡。

The data was collected under a NHTSA order last year requiring automakers to report crashes involving cars with advanced driver-assistance systems. Scores of manufacturers have rolled out such systems in recent years, including features that let you take your hands off the steering wheel under certain conditions and that help you parallel park.

这些数据是根据NHTSA去年的一项命令收集的,该命令要求汽车制造商报告涉及配备先进驾驶辅助系统的车辆事故。近年来,数十家制造商推出了这类系统,包括在某些情况下让手离开方向盘的功能,以及帮助你侧方停车的功能。

NHTSA’s order was an unusually bold step for the regulator, which has come under fire in recent years for not being more assertive with automakers.

NHTSA的命令对该监管机构来说是一个不同寻常的大胆举措,近年来,该机构因对汽车制造商不够强硬而受到批评。

“Until last year, NHTSA’s response to autonomous vehicles and driver assistance has been, frankly, passive,” said Matthew Wansley, a professor at the Cardozo School of Law in New York who specializes in emerging automotive technologies. “This is the first time the federal government has directly collected crash data on these technologies.”

“坦白地说,直到去年,NHTSA对自动驾驶汽车和驾驶辅助系统的反应一直很被动,”纽约卡多佐法学院专攻新兴汽车技术的教授马修·万斯利说。“这是联邦政府首次直接收集有关这些技术的事故数据。”

Speaking with reporters ahead of Wednesday’s release, Steven Cliff, the NHTSA administrator, said the data — which the agency will continue to collect — “will help our investigators quickly identify potential defect trends that emerge.”

在周三公布数据前,NHTSA局长史蒂文·克利夫对记者表示,该机构将继续收集这些数据,“这将帮助我们的调查人员迅速识别出现的潜在缺陷趋势。”

Dr. Cliff said NHTSA would use such data as a guide in making any rules or requirements for their design and use. “These technologies hold great promise to improve safety, but we need to understand how these vehicles are performing in real-world situations,” he said.

克利夫说,NHTSA将以这些数据为指导,对功能的设计和使用制定规则或要求。他说:“这些技术在改善安全方面有着巨大的潜力,但我们需要了解这些车辆在现实环境中的表现。”

But he cautioned against drawing conclusions from the data collected so far, noting that it does not take into account factors like the number of cars from each manufacturer that are on the road and equipped with these types of technologies.

但他提醒,不要从目前收集的数据中得出结论,他指出,目前的数据并没有考虑到各个制造商在路上行驶、配备了这类技术的汽车数量等因素。

An advanced driver-assistance system can steer, brake and accelerate vehicles on its own, though drivers must stay alert and ready to take control of the vehicle at any time.

先进的驾驶辅助系统可以自动转向、刹车和加速,但司机必须保持警惕,随时准备控制车辆。

Safety experts are concerned because these systems allow drivers to relinquish active control of the car and could lull them into thinking their cars are driving themselves. When the technology malfunctions or cannot handle a particular situation, drivers may be unprepared to take control quickly.

安全专家对此表示担忧,因为这些系统允许司机放弃对汽车的主动控制,并可能让他们误以为自己的汽车在自动驾驶。当技术出现故障或无法处理特定情况时,司机可能没有做好快速控制的准备。

About 830,000 Tesla cars in the United States are equipped with Autopilot or the company’s other driver-assistance technologies — offering one explanation why Tesla vehicles accounted for nearly 70 percent of the reported crashes in the data released Wednesday.

在美国,大约有83万辆特斯拉汽车配备了“自动辅助驾驶”或该公司的其他驾驶辅助技术——这解释了为什么特斯拉汽车在周三公布的数据中占报告事故的近70%。

Ford Motor, General Motors, BMW and others have similar advanced systems that allow hands-free driving under certain conditions on highways, but far fewer of those models have been sold. These companies, however, have sold millions of cars over the last two decades that are equipped with individual components of driver-assistance systems. The components include so-called lane keeping, which helps drivers stay in their lanes, and adaptive cruise control, which maintains a car’s speed and brakes automatically when traffic ahead slows.

福特汽车、通用汽车、宝马和其他公司也有类似的先进系统,允许在特定条件下在高速公路上不使用双手驾驶,但这些车型的销量要少得多。然而,在过去20年里,这些公司已经销售了数以百万计配备了驾驶员辅助系统独立组件的汽车。这些组件包括所谓的车道保持(帮助司机保持在车道上),以及自适应巡航控制(在前方车辆减速时保持车速并自动刹车)。

In Wednesday’s release, NHTSA disclosed that Honda vehicles were involved in 90 incidents and Subarus in 10. Ford, G.M., BMW, Volkswagen, Toyota, Hyundai and Porsche each reported five or fewer.

在周三的发布中,NHTSA披露,本田汽车涉及90起事故,斯巴鲁涉及10起。福特、通用、宝马、大众、丰田、现代和保时捷分别报告了五起或更少的事故。

The data includes cars with systems designed to operate with little or no intervention from the driver, and separate data on systems that can simultaneously steer and control the car’s speed but require constant attention from the driver.

这些数据将那些配备有设计旨在很少或不需要司机干预的情况下操作系统的车辆囊括在内,并与可以同时操纵和控制汽车速度、但需要司机持续关注系统的数据做区别处理。

The automated vehicles — which are still in development for the most part but are being tested on public roads — were involved in 130 incidents, NHTSA found. One resulted in a serious injury, 15 in minor or moderate injuries, and 108 didn’t result in injuries. Many of the crashes involving automated vehicles led to fender benders or bumper taps because they were operated mainly at low speeds and in city driving.

NHTSA发现,这些大部分仍处于研发阶段、但正在公共道路上测试的自动驾驶汽车共发生了130起事故,其中一起导致一人重伤,15起导致轻伤或中伤,108起没有导致受伤。许多涉及自动驾驶车辆的碰撞事故导致挡泥板或保险杠被撞,因为它们主要是在低速行驶和城市行驶时发生的。

In more than a third of the 130 accidents involving the automated systems, the car was stopped and hit by another vehicle. In 11 crashes, a car enabled with such technology was going straight and collided with another vehicle that was changing lanes, the data showed.

在涉及自动系统的130起事故中,有超过三分之一的自动系统车辆是被其他车辆追尾。数据显示,在11起事故中,采用该技术的汽车在直线行驶时与另一辆正在变道的汽车相撞。

Most of the incidents involving advanced systems were in San Francisco or the Bay Area, where companies like Waymo, Argo AI and Cruise are testing and refining the technology.

大多数涉及先进系统的事故发生在旧金山或湾区,Waymo、Argo AI和Cruise等公司正在那里测试和完善这类技术。

Waymo, which is owned by Google’s parent company and is running a fleet of driverless taxis in Arizona, was part of 62 incidents. Cruise, a division of G.M., was involved in 23. Cruise just started offering driverless taxi rides in San Francisco, and this month it received permission from the California authorities to begin charging passengers.

谷歌母公司旗下的Waymo在亚利桑那州运营一支无人驾驶出租车队,该公司涉及62起事故。通用汽车旗下的Cruise公司涉及23起事故,该公司刚刚开始在旧金山提供无人驾驶出租车服务,本月它获得加州当局的许可,开始向乘客收费。

None of the cars using the automated systems were involved in fatal accidents, and only one crash led to a serious injury. In March, a cyclist hit a vehicle operated by Cruise from behind while both were traveling downhill on a street in San Francisco.

没有一起使用自动系统的车辆发生致命事故,只有一起事故导致重伤。今年3月,在旧金山的一条街道上,一名骑自行车的人从后面撞上了一辆Cruise运营的汽车,当时双方都在下坡。

NHTSA’s order for automakers to submit the data was prompted partly by crashes and fatalities over the last six years that involved Teslas operating in Autopilot. Last week NHTSA widened an investigation into whether Autopilot has technological and design flaws that pose safety risks.

NHTSA之所以要求汽车制造商提交数据,部分原因是在过去六年中,特斯拉车辆在使用“自动辅助驾驶”功能时曾发生车祸和死亡事故。上周,NHTSA扩大了对自动驾驶系统是否存在技术和设计缺陷,构成安全风险的调查范围。

The agency has been looking into 35 crashes that occurred while Autopilot was activated, including nine that resulted in the deaths of 14 people since 2014. It had also opened a preliminary investigation into 16 incidents in which Teslas under Autopilot control crashed into emergency vehicles that had stopped and had their lights flashing.

该机构一直在调查“自动辅助驾驶”功能启用状态下发生的35起事故,其中包括2014年以来导致14人死亡的9起事故。该公司还对16起事故展开了初步调查,在这些事故中,特斯拉在“自动辅助驾驶”功能的控制下撞上了已经停车并闪着灯的应急车辆。

In November, Tesla recalled nearly 12,000 vehicles that were part of the beta test of Full Self Driving — a version of Autopilot designed for use on city streets — after deploying a software update that the company said might cause crashes because of unexpected activation of the cars’ emergency braking system.

去年11月,特斯拉召回了近1.2万辆参与“全自动驾驶”beta测试的汽车,“全自动驾驶”是“自动辅助驾驶”专为在城市街道上使用的版本,此前,特斯拉在一次软件更新后称该更新可能会因意外激活汽车的紧急制动系统而导致车祸。

NHTSA’s order required companies to provide data on crashes when advanced driver-assistance systems and automated technologies were in use within 30 seconds of impact. Though this data provides a broader picture of the behavior of these systems than ever before, it is still difficult to determine whether they reduce crashes or otherwise improve safety.

NHTSA的命令要求,当汽车在距离碰撞发生30秒内使用了先进的驾驶辅助系统和自动化技术时,就需要提供事故数据。尽管这些数据使人们比以往任何时候都更全面地了解这些系统的行为,但仍然难以确定它们是否减少了碰撞或以其他方式提高了安全性。

The agency has not collected data that would allow researchers to easily determine whether using these systems is safer than turning them off in the same situations. Automakers were allowed to redact descriptions of what happened during the accidents, an option that Tesla as well as Ford and others used routinely, making it harder to interpret the data.

在相同情况下使用这些系统是否比不使用更加安全,在这一点上该机构尚未收集能够方便研究人员得出结论的数据。汽车制造商被允许编辑事故发生过程的描述,这是特斯拉以及福特和其他公司经常使用的做法,这使得解释数据变得更加困难。

Some independent studies have explored these technologies, but have not yet shown whether they reduce crashes or otherwise improve safety.

一些独立研究已经探索了这些技术,但尚未表明它们是否会减少碰撞或以其他方式提高安全性。

J. Christian Gerdes, a professor of mechanical engineering and a director of Stanford University’s Center for Automotive Research, said the data released Wednesday was helpful, up to a point. “Can we learn more from this data? Yes,” he said. “Is it an absolute gold mine for researchers? I don’t see that.”

斯坦福大学汽车研究中心主任、机械工程教授J·克里斯蒂安·格德斯表示,周三公布的数据在一定程度上是有帮助的。“我们可以从这些数据中了解更多信息吗?是的,”他说。“对于研究人员来说,它有极高的研究价值吗?我不觉得。”

Because of the redactions, he said, it was hard to gauge the ultimate utility of the findings. “NHTSA has a lot better understanding of this data than the general public can get just looking through what was released,” he said.

他说,由于数据曾被改动,很难衡量这些发现最终的效用。他说:“NHTSA对这些数据的理解,比只能去看已公布内容的公众要好得多。”

Dr. Cliff, the NHTSA administrator, was guarded about acting on the results. “The data may raise more questions than they answer,” he said.

NHTSA负责人克利夫对根据研究结果采取行动持谨慎态度。“这些数据引发的问题可能比它们带来的答案的要多,”他说。

But some experts said the newly available information should prompt regulators to be more assertive.

但一些专家表示,新获得的信息应该会促使监管机构更加果断。

“NHTSA can and should use its various powers to do more — rule makings, star ratings, investigations, further inquiries and soft influence,” said Bryant Walker Smith, an associate professor in the University of South Carolina’s law and engineering schools who specializes in emerging transportation technologies.

“NHTSA可以而且应该利用其各种权力做更多事情——制定规则、评级、调查、进一步质询和施加软影响,”南卡罗来纳大学法律和工程学院副教授、研究新兴运输技术的布莱恩特·沃克·史密斯说。

“These data could also prompt further voluntary and involuntary disclosures,” he added. “Some companies might willingly provide more context, especially about miles traveled, crashes ‘prevented,’ and other indicators of good performance. Trial attorneys will be looking for patterns and even cases in these data.”

“这些数据还可能促使进一步的自愿和非自愿披露,”他还说。“一些公司可能愿意提供更多的背景信息,尤其是关于行驶里程、成功‘避撞’以及其他证明良好表现的指标。出庭律师将在这些数据中寻找规律甚至例证。”

All in all, he said, “this is a good start.”

总而言之,他说,“这是一个好的开始。”
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