US House sends self-driving auto bill to the Senate

US House sends self-driving auto bill to the Senate

U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao was expected to reveal the revised guidelines next Tuesday at a self-driving vehicle testing center in Ann Arbor, Michigan, four individuals informed on the matter stated. If it becomes law (which still requires it to pass the Senate), then it would make it possible for companies working on self-driving to field a lot more vehicles per year - as many as 100,000 autonomous test cars annually, in fact. The proposal, which Reuters reports will shortly be headed for a vote in the Senate, would make it possible for carmakers to test their autonomous vehicles even if they're not as safe as all the other cars on the road. The House bill only applies to passenger cars and light trucks.

"Today, the House passed the SELF DRIVE Act, which will improve transportation safety, stimulate economic growth and ensure we are embracing the full potential of technological advances in the automotive industry with respect to self-driving cars", Bilirakis said after the House approved the bill.

"With this legislation, innovation can flourish without the heavy hand of government", said Ohio Republican Bob Latta, who chairs the House Energy and Commerce subcommittee that developed the legislation.

The draft law, if fully passed, effectively gives the DoT's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) the power to decide the design and safety limits of autonomous vehicles. "I'm really proud of the fact that we got this out of the House".




Advocates hope self-driving cars would help reduce USA road deaths, which increased 7.7 per cent in 2015, the highest annual jump since 1966.

Companies including Waymo, GM, Ford Motor Co (F.N), Uber Technologies Inc UBER.UL, Tesla Inc (TSLA.O) and others are aggressively pursuing automated vehicle technologies.

The bills, passed unanimously by a House panel in July, would permit automakers to acquire exemptions to deploy as much as 25,000 vehicles without meeting present auto safety standards in the first year. Commercial vehicles are not included as part of the House bill. The non-binding policy was first issued by the Obama administration in September 2016 to provide some basic safety guidelines for autonomous vehicles while stopping-short of issuing new regulations.

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