Legislation Introduced on Autonomous Vehicles
Senator Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima) is introducing SB 1298, which would direct the California Highway Patrol to develop guidelines for the safe testing and operation of autonomous vehicles in California. Last year, similar legislation was signed into law in Nevada. In addition, Arizona, Hawaii, Florida and Oklahoma are all currently considering autonomous vehicles legislation.
“It was pretty amazing when Google’s vehicle went into self-driving mode. The drive was smooth and safe. It worked flawlessly. It is a testament to human ingenuity and the power of technology in California,” said Senator Alex Padilla.
“The vast majority of vehicle accidents are due to human error. Through the use of computers, sensors and other systems, an autonomous vehicle is capable of analyzing the driving environment more quickly and operating the vehicle more safely. Autonomous vehicles have the potential to significantly reduce traffic fatalities and improve safety on our roads and highways,” said Senator Alex Padilla.
“Advancement and deployment of autonomous vehicles will not only save lives, it will create jobs. California is uniquely positioned to be the global leader in this field,” added Senator Padilla.
“California is our home state. Our self-driving cars have safely traveled more than 200,000 miles here. We're very fortunate to have found a supporter with a strong technical background in Senator Padilla, and we look forward to working with him throughout this process," said Anthony Levandowski, Google Product Manager.
In recent years car manufacturers have introduced a variety of semi-autonomous technologies including adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning systems, pre-collision braking and self-parking. Autonomous vehicles are the logical next step. Google and several automakers including BMW, Audi and Volvo have been pursuing driverless technology with the goal of greater safety, improved fuel efficiency and increased roadway capacity.