The Michigan Senate has unanimously approved new legislation that benefits self-driving cars.
The four-bill package will allow self-driving cars to be driven on roads in the state for any reason, instead of only while being tested. The bill’s supporters include General Motors and Ford, which say the legislation is necessary to establish Michigan as a leader in the autonomous vehicle industry. The bills each cleared the Senate 36-0 and are now moved to the House for consideration.
The legislation will also allow a computer system to act as the driver of a vehicle when the system is active, meaning it could eventually be possible for self-driving cars to be tested without a human driver. In addition, the bills extend liability protections to mechanics who work on automated vehicles and authorize the planned American Center for Mobility (above) at the former General Motors Willow Run facility in Ypsilanti Township.
Michigan is one of seven states and Washington, D.C., that have laws regulating autonomous vehicle development. Earlier this year, Florida eliminated the requirement that a human driver be present for testing purposes and Nevada is exploring whether it will modify its current regulations next year. Currently, Nevada requires at least one person to be present in the test vehicle at all times.
[Source: Crain’s Detroit]