Opinion Former Article

New rules for UK’s self-driving future" consultation announced

A Law Commission review into "new rules for UK’s self-driving future" was announced earlier this month. Despite a degree of scepticism throughout the industry, government and companies have been preparing themselves for a time when autonomous vehicles (AVs) are widely used throughout the network and what changes need to be made.

The work seeks to understand any legal obstacles to introducing autonomous vehicles and how regulations should change to ensure that our roads are safe for both vehicle users and vulnerable users. Key questions that need answering include;

  • Who would be legally responsible for accidents?
  • Should automated vehicles ever be allowed to mount the pavement?
  • Should automated vehicles ever be allowed to exceed the speed limit within tolerances?
  • Should automated vehicles ever be allowed to edge through pedestrians?

CIHT will be submitting a full response to the consultation and is eager to hear your views at Technical@ciht.org.uk. You can access the relevant documents at this link.

Law Commissioner Nicholas Paines QC said: “Automated vehicles will have a transformative effect on how we take journeys, our standard of living and the wider economy. We want to hear from stakeholders and the public about how to create an environment in which this technology can flourish whilst maintaining public safety.”

CIHT recently held an event entitled 'CAV Ready Roads' earlier this year where members said that they did not expect AVs to be the majority of the fleet for another 30 years and that they were most worried about partially autonomous vehicles, and the consequences of a mixed fleet as technology progresses. Presentations from the event can be found in the members area of www.ciht.org.uk.

More Articles by Chartered Institution of Highways & Transportation (CIHT) ...

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