Some of the leaders in autonomous cars have made a big step towards to bring their self-driving vehicles to market.
Development of autonomous driver systems continues at a fevered pace around the industry, but regulatory questions such as who would be at fault in an accident are still unanswered. Volvo, Google and Mercedes have now all said that they will accept full liability if their self-driving vehicles cause a collision.
Volvo’s CEO, Håkan Samuelsson, will announce the decision when he speaks in Washington D.C. on Thursday. He will also speak on the broader topic of what it will take to get self-driving cars into the hands of the public. “The U.S. risks losing its leading position due to the lack of federal guidelines for the testing and certification of autonomous vehicles,” Samuelsson said. “Europe has suffered to some extend by having a patchwork of rules and regulations. It would be a shame if the U.S. took a similar path.”
In a report from 60 Minutes, both Google and Mercedes-Benz said that they would also accept responsibility for collisions caused by their cars, though they both expect very few incidents to occur.
Just four U.S. sates currently allow autonomous vehicle testing on public roads: California, Nevada, Florida and Michigan. NHTSA is currently working on how to set standards that will be consistent across the states and previously issued an advanced notice of upcoming laws and regulations to mandate vehicle-to-vehicle communication.
[Source: 60 Minutes]
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