House Passes Bill to Speed Introduction of Self-Driving Vehicles

So it's no small thing that the U.S. House of Representatives unanimously passed a massive bill on Wednesday aimed at speeding the development of self-driving cars on public roads and superseding the patchwork of regulations in individual states.

The bill, which needs Senate approval before being sent to the White House, would prevent states from imposing regulations on autonomous vehicles that would make it more hard for manufacturers to deploy self-driving cars nationwide.

States will still be able to set regulations on registration, safety inspections, licensing, and insurance.

"With this legislation, innovation can flourish without the heavy hand of government", Ohio Republican Bob Latta said on the House floor ahead of the voice vote in the chamber September 6. Meanwhile, Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao is scheduled to release revised self-driving guidelines during a speech next Tuesday in Ann Arbor, Mich. But one consumer group said the House bill did not do enough to ensure self-driving cars would be safe.

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The bill - which takes the abbreviated name of the SELF DRIVE Act - is meant to get vehicles without manual controls to market and prohibit states from blocking the technology's sale or use.

Designers of self-driving cars have complained that the differing laws of each state have hindered the deployment of vehicles. Over three years, the cap would hit 100,000 cars.

Recode reports that while the Senate may struggle to find time to vote on its version this year, the Trump administration is expected to issue a voluntary safety checklist for automakers as early as next week.

The Senate has been debating a similar bill to SELF DRIVE, and they haven't passed any legislation yet.

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The rate of these crashes climbed more than 50 percent over the three-day Labor Day weekend past year . It should be expected that traffic flow in northern MI will be impacted to some degree.

Automakers raised numerous concerns about the Obama administration guidance, including the suggestion that automakers should submit systems to regulators for review before putting them on the market.

Companies like Google-owned Waymo, Telsa, Uber, and longtime automotive manufacturers such as General Motors, have had to tiptoe around strict regulations in their testing of autonomous vehicle tech, and this legislation would certainly remove some of those road blocks.

The bill mandates that all manufacturers of self-driving cars develop a cybersecurity plan that includes a process for detecting and responding to cyberattacks, mitigating vulnerabilities to attacks, and taking preventative and corrective action when necessary.

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(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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