(All this information from TIME magazine’s March 07 cover story). ‘You can’t have a person driving a 2-ton death machine’ said Elon Musk at a conference last year. The numbers are sobering : about 33,000 Americans die in auto accidents in a year, with an additional 2 million or so injured. Some 94% of accidents are the fault of drivers. The price tag for this mayhem comes to some $836 billion by one estimate. Even if only 10% of vehicles can be converted to self-driving cars or trucks, the number of accidents could be reduced by 211,000 and 1,100 lives be saved every year. But it will not be easy. Whole industries (such as the auto insurance industry) will be upended, and as TIME puts it : even though there is no ‘right to drive’ enshrined in the US Constitution .. ‘in the throne room of the American psyche, a driver’s seat occupies center stage’.