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Thursday, January 19 2017

Car makers and tech firms are convinced that driverless cars are the future, but they appear to be ahead of consumers in that thinking.

Only 23 percent of Americans say they are willing to ride in an autonomous car, while 28 percent say they are unwilling, according to a new survey.

The poll from media firm Morning Consult found that Americans have safety concerns about self-driving cars: 41 percent of American adults think autonomous cars are less safe than a vehicle driven by humans, while 33 percent said they are more safe. Seven percent said they are equally safe.

Age is a big factor: 41 percent of 18-29 year-olds believe autonomous cars are safer than vehicles driven by humans, while only 22 percent of those 65+ believe they are safer (49 percent of 65+ say they are less safe).

However that could change. The same poll, conducted January 12-13, 2017 among 2,200 American adults, also found some optimism about the future of autonomous vehicles. A plurality of respondents, 42 percent, said they may be willing to ride in one in the future.

Boston Consulting Group says the autonomous car vehicle business will increase to $42 billion by 2025 and account for a quarter of global sales by 2035. At the recent Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Tesla Motors Inc., BMW, Ford, Volvo and Google showed off their models and shared their visions of an autonomous future; overall there were some 138 auto-tech exhibitors seeking deals in the self-driving economy.

Tuesday, January 17 2017

For the first time, The Hartford has ranked #1 in Auto claim customer satisfaction in the J.D. Power 2016 U.S. Auto Claims Satisfaction Study.
In addition to receiving the highest overall satisfaction score among 27 insurance providers, customers also ranked us as the #1 carrier for first notice of loss. 

Tuesday, January 17 2017

Commercial truck drivers with three or more medical conditions double to quadruple their chance for being in a crash than healthier drivers, reports a study led by investigators at the University of Utah School of Medicine.

The findings suggest that a trucker’s poor health could be a detriment not only to himself but also to others around him. “What these data are telling us is that with decreasing health comes increased crash risk, including crashes that truck drivers could prevent,” says the study’s lead author Matthew Thiese.

Thiese notes that keeping healthy can be tough for truck drivers, who typically sit for long hours behind the wheel, deal with poor sleeping conditions, and have a hard time finding nutritious meals on the road. The rate of crashes resulting in injury among all truck drivers was 29 per 100 million miles traveled. For drivers with three or more ailments, the frequency increased to 93 per 100 million miles traveled, according to Thiese. 

Considering that occupants of the other vehicle get hurt in three-quarters of injury crashes involving trucks, it’s in the public interest to continue investigating the issue, says the study’s senior author Kurt Hegmann, M.D., M.P.H., director of RMCOEH. “If we can better understand the interplay between driver health and crash risk, then we can better address safety concerns,” he says.

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