@richardst It is customary, when an expert is doing an accident root cause analysis, to reach an opinion that a particular cause was "more likely than not" a primary cause of the accident. This is because the full list of potential causes generally includes more than one that cannot be ruled out entirely. However, in this Oklahoma case, the opinion I reached and testified to was that a failure of the engine controller was the only plausible root cause. This was in large part because both side's accident reconstructions put the driver on her brake at the start of a 150 foot skid mark. Even if the driver had confused the pedals earlier in the drive, this skid mark (apparently from additional use of the parking brake) was way too long for a Camry at that speed unless the throttle was being held open.
Drones are, in essence, flying autonomous vehicles. Pros and cons surrounding drones today might well foreshadow the debate over the development of self-driving cars. In the context of a strongly regulated aviation industry, "self-flying" drones pose a fresh challenge. How safe is it to fly drones in different environments? Should drones be required for visual line of sight – as are piloted airplanes? Join EE Times' Junko Yoshida as she moderates a panel of drone experts.