Waymo’s Self-Driving Taxis Offer New Independence for the Blind

As proponents of self-driving cars eagerly await the convenience of autonomous vehicles, those without vision are excited for a new sense of independence.

“The last obstacle in their world is getting from point A to point B. They can’t hop in a car like you and I can. They’ve got to rely on others, or public transportation,” Marc Ashton, CEO of The Foundation for Blind Children, said in an interview with Cheddar’s Hope King.

But that could all change as Waymo, a self-driving technology development company, refines its models to let users hail a self-driving taxi. Ashton said when his students try out the vehicles, they quickly ask where they can buy one.

Autonomous taxis also offer a less stressful option than some alternatives, Ashton said. With conventional ride-sharing services like Lyft ($LYFT) and Uber, riders are in a car with a stranger, which can be unconformable for the visually impaired.