Cars designed to be completely driverless, like that being tested by Google, are to be initially excluded from being granted licenses
STU ROBARTS DECEMBER 17, 2015
To many, the concept of self-driving cars will still seem absurd. In California, however, they are very real. Not only has testing been allowed on its public roads since last year, but the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) has now drafted regulations for the public use of autonomous cars.
California issued its first permit for testing an autonomous vehicle on its public roads to Audi in last September. Only this week we reported on its most recent license for testing, awarded to Ford. Now, though, the DMV is looking to set down what will be required in order for members of the public to operate autonomous cars as a matter of course.
The DMV says the "draft regulations are intended to promote the continued development of autonomous vehicle technology in California, while transitioning manufacturers from testing to deployment of self-driving cars." Among the issues that the regulations seek to address are vehicle safety, certification, operator responsibilities, licensing and registration, privacy, and cyber-security
The regulations will not simply be dictated from on high, however, but will be publicly consulted on first. Workshops will be carried out to gather input from industry, consumer and public interest groups, academics and the public.
"The primary focus of the deployment regulations is the safety of autonomous vehicles and the safety of the public who will share the road with these vehicles," says DMV director Jean Shiomoto. "We want to get public input on these draft regulations before we initiate the formal regulatory rule making process."
Apparently Google is "...gravely disappointed that California is already writing a ceiling on the potential for fully self-driving cars to help all of us who live here."
Key points and full article here