Self-driving cars, SUVs, and the trolley problem.

The Detroit Free Press investigation showed that NHTSA knew four years ago that the proliferation of pickups and SUVs was putting pedestrians at risk thanks to heavier vehicle weights, higher bumpers, and compromised visibility. “Pedestrians are 2-3 times more likely to suffer a fatality when struck by an SUV or pickup truck than when struck by a passenger car,” the agency concluded in 2015. Children between 5 and 9 years old had a fatality risk four times greater in collisions with light trucks and SUVs than with cars. The regulators did nothing. If another product saw its nonuser death count spike by 50 percent in 10 years, consumers would revolt and Congress would make a big show of getting to the bottom of it. Automobiles are different.