Yeah, this article is almost complete bollocks and the author is a complete idiot.
First, there are fewer than 35,000 traffic related deaths per year in the U.S. and that number, while still way too high, is dropping. Yes, self driving cars will dramatically reduce this number, even if we manage to implement them in a way where perfect doesn't get in the way of good enough.
NHTSA reports traffic fatalities fell 3.1 percent in 2013 to 32,719 people from 33,782 in 2012. An estimated 2.31 million people were injured in motor vehicle crashes in 2013, down 2.1 percent from 2.36 in 2012.
New findings from the Insurance Research Council's (IRC) Auto Injury Insurance Claims Study shows that medical expenses reported by auto injury claimants continue to increase faster than the rate of inflation, in spite of the fact that the severity of the injuries themselves remain on a downward trend. From 2007 to 2012, average claimed economic losses (which include expenses for medical care, lost wages and other out-of-pocket expenditures) grew 8 percent annualized among personal injury protection (PIP) claimants. Among bodily injury (BI) claimants, average claimed losses grew 4 percent. Over the same period, measures such as the percentage of claimants who had no visible injuries at the accident scene or who had fewer than 10 days in which they were unable to perform their usual daily activities provided evidence of a continuing decline in the severity of injuries.
In 2013, the average auto liability claim for property damage was $3,231; the average auto liability claim for bodily injury was $15,443 (ISO, a Verisk Analytics company).
In 2013, the average collision claim was $3,144; the average comprehensive claim was $1,621 (ISO, a Verisk Analytics company).
In addition, there is no reason that self driving cars will need 5G to operate. In fact, almost all of the manufacturers working on driverless vehicles are explicitly targeting full, on-board self sufficiency, because if your external communication fails, for whatever reason, the vehicle still needs to function.
The water issue is stupid. It's NOT that much data. The only reason we have the leaks that we do is (most minor) the lack of sensors on existing water infrastructure, and (most important) the extreme cost of replacing the oldest, and most leaky of the pipes. I work in the office right next to our municipal water department operators. They know where our biggest losses are, (it's easy to see the flow through upstream and downstream pumps and compare them, you don't need centimeter accuracy) but to replace the, in some places 80 year old pipes (much worse in older cities) would cost around a billion dollars. In some places like NYC or LA, you can bet that replacing some of the oldest existing infrastructure would require the demolition of skyscrapers to get to it
Finally, to get higher data transmission, you MUST go to higher frequencies. Higher frequencies degrade faster over distance and are far more affected by interference and line-of-sight issues, requiring a much larger number of base stations connected to the wired grid. There are still vast swathes of the US without even basic 2G service. 10-100 Gb wireless may become available in some very high density locations, or eventually be an option for devices within a private home, but unless we discover new physics, I can't see it ever being deployed for large scale coverage, especially in sparsely populated or poor regions.