On the 27th June, Birmingham’s Icentrum will host the highly-anticipated Midlands Connected Autonomous Vehicle (MCAV) event. This will give stakeholders an opportunity to build a collective community, within an industry set to provide a boost to the UK economy worth an estimated £8 billion by 2019. The MCAV event will provide an environment for hosts and guests to form long-term relationships, as we collaborate to tackle some of the key issues surrounding the autonomous vehicle industry. But why has this industry been valued so highly? And what might it mean for the future of UK transport and how we operate as a society?
By 2030, it has been estimated that autonomous vehicles will generate an extra £51 billion pounds a year into the British economy. This is well-received news at a time where politicians are openly questioning opposing political parties: asking how they can afford to implement the new changes they promise. As we leave the EU and head into the unknown, the autonomous vehicle industry provides hope of a rigid, expanding economy.
Analysing the predicted financial boost to the economy sheds light on the sectors of our population that will be instantly affected. Disabled people will be provided with the freedom to travel without assistance or constraint. This gives the disabled community of Britain an opportunity to increase their level of education, leading to improved job prospects. Recent research suggests that freedom will be generated for an estimated 1 million people, boosting average earnings by around £8,500 per year. The benefits to the disabled community are priceless. Not only will employment prospects be improved, but a new level of independence will be given, as they are granted the freedom to socialise on a wider scale.
It is not only disabled people who are predicted to benefit from employment opportunities. An estimated 320,000 jobs will be created by the autonomous vehicle industry, and both the quality of life and financial position of almost every citizen in the UK will instantly improve. Insurance will, effectively, become irrelevant. Car maintenance, MOT, tax costs, etc., will vanish. Aside from financial savings, when we examine how stressful driving to work in congestion and rush-hour traffic can be, our levels of stress will decrease as we sit back and watch videos or play games via the technology existing within autonomous vehicles.
The wider impact that cars currently have on our planet is a concern to many people, but driverless cars will reduce our carbon footprint enormously. No longer will cities be filled with polluting fumes during rush-hour traffic. Our natural environment, whether driving, walking, running or cycling will improve and the planet’s health will be back under our control.
What we desperately need at this stage, is to change the perception of autonomous vehicles – to overcome the risk-averse culture that Britain has. Generating conversation and promoting the industry is a great way to do this, and the MCAV event is an opportunity for stakeholders to discuss, question and contribute suggestions towards issues within the autonomous vehicle industry. It will help build relationships and potential job opportunities within an exciting and life-changing industry. The driverless revolution is set to begin on the 27th June. Don’t miss out.
By Neil Phipps