Congress Still Has A Shot At Getting Autonomous Vehicle Regulation Right

“The amendment fails to provide consumer protection and instead essentially creates a fast-track process for manufacturers to attest that their driverless vehicle is no more safe than the least safe vehicle on the road today, before being permitted to sell tens of thousands of them and turning them loose in our neighborhoods,” [Levine] said in an email. “Throwing open the door to more unregulated testing and underregulated sales without a strong oversight mandate is no way to bolster diminished public trust in driverless technology.”

 by Erik Shilling
April 23, 2021

Sen. Gary Peters, a Democrat from Michigan, and Sen. John Thune, a Republican from South Dakota, are proposing legislation covering autonomous vehicles be attached to an otherwise unrelated bill working its way through Congress, according to a new report. This is probably not where great public policy begins.

The amendment would let the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration exempt 15,000 autonomous cars per automaker from some safety standards, a provision that would increase to as much as 80,000 autonomous cars within a few years, per Reuters. The amendment, intended to speed the introduction of AVs, would be a part of a separate $100 billion bill aimed at boosting American research, with China in mind.

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