Residents of the Villages Retirement Community near Orlando have been selected to be volunteers by a startup called Voyage, which specializes in autonomous vehicles. They are offering the seniors free transportation to grocery stores, shopping trips, or anything they may need. During the first phase, a technician boards for the passenger’s safety and to monitor the system.
The reason why Voyage chose these seniors is because people over a certain age are more likely to have impaired vision and thus unable to drive either at night or in broad daylight. Another reason is that the Villages provide a controlled environment due to the neat layout of its roads, homes, and commercial centers. The vehicle of choice is the Ford Fusion featuring a rooftop LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) that is designed to view and understand roads and surroundings the same way humans do.
The project could revolutionize how seniors transport themselves as well as spur the automobile industry to make more progress in developing their own self-driving vehicles.
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