Self-Driving Cars To Be Allowed On Motorways Next Year

Thanks to new legislation, it won’t be long until you find yourself sharing the nation’s motorways with self-driving cars. Here’s what you need to know…

Self-Driving Cars On The Motorway 

The government is considering proposals that would allow cars with self-driving technology to traverse the nation’s motorways. Car manufacturers wish to roll-out the next generation of safety features next year; including lane-keeping and collision-avoidance. As a result, their cars won’t simply warn drivers of danger, they’ll actively take control of the vehicle.

Whilst these were initially envisioned as tools to tackle congestion and slow-moving traffic, the government is weighing up their use up to speeds of 70mph – including on the slow lanes of motorways. Nevertheless, the most controversial factor is whether drivers will be held responsible for their cars or whether they’ll be classified as automated. All of the technology will require drivers to remain ready to take over at all times. However, the technology provider could be held responsible when the Automated Lane Keeping Systems are engaged.

‘Life-Changing Technology’ 

Rachel Maclean, the transport minister, said the outcome of the discussions would be significant. She said, “automated technology could make driving safer, smoother and easier for motorists, and the UK should be the first country to see these benefits, attracting manufacturers to develop and test new technologies”. In addition, Mike Hawes, chief executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, believes the tech could be “life-changing”. He explained, “this advanced technology is ready for rollout in new models from as early as 2021, so today’s announcement is a welcome step in preparing the UK for its use, so we can be among the first to grasp the benefits of this road safety revolution.”

Not everyone’s convinced. Jim Holder, editorial director of What Car?, is sceptical that the automotive industry will accept the risk of responsibility. He’s also expressed doubts about the reliability of lane-keeping features. “This is an industry under massive financial pressure. Why they would take on another huge insurance risk? They’re [lane-keeping systems] not necessarily at the point where you’d trust them enough. They work 90% of the time, but that’s not enough”, he said.

People Keep Falling Asleep In Self-Driving Cars, Here’s The Problem –

Driverless Cars: A £1 Million Research Project Is Preparing Motorways –

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