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Will You Be Travelling Alongside a Driverless Vehicle Next Year?

Will You Be Travelling Alongside a Driverless Vehicle Next Year?

As George Osborne announced £10 million in funding it is all go go go in the world of driverless vehicles and it’s happening closer to home than ever before.  Here in the UK 4 cities will be involved in trials that start in January 2015 and will last between 18 and 36 months.  The hope is that such extensive trials will put the UK at the forefront of research, development and testing of driverless vehicles. 

The testing beginning next year will involve 4 cities each with an area to focus on –

Blog / map of driverless cities

Greenwich, South East London – will be looking into automated passenger shuttle vehicles and the use of driverless valet parking.

Bristol – will be looking at the insurance implications of driverless vehicles and how the public react to driverless vehicles.

Milton Keynes and Coventry will be working together on the UK Autodrive with contributions from many organisations including Ford and Jaguar Land Rover.  This will assess the use of driverless vehicles on the road and the use of self-driving pods for pedestrianized vehicles.  Due to Bristol’s hilly terrain it will also test driverless vehicles ability to cope with difficult driving conditions.

Blog / driverless shuttle

Overall the period of testing hopes to generate more acceptance from the public of driverless vehicles and test the cars ability to drive in the real world.  Data can also be collected on whether driverless cars will reduce congestion, make roads safer and reduce pollution.

It is hoped seeing driverless vehicles out on the road will help the public see how they will integrate into everyday life.  For many there are still concerns over who would be liable in the case of an accident – would it be the occupant of the driverless vehicle or the manufacturer?  There are also great concerns over cyber-attacks – if the vehicles navigation system can be hacked the hackers would then be controlling the vehicle, this poses serious safety risks and it is unclear whether the industry has prepared for the possibility of cyber-attacks.

All of this brings is ever closer to what now seems inevitable – a driverless future. 

For this history of driverless cars in the making read our blog ‘Driverless Vehicles- Will They Ever Become a Reality?’

The comments above do not necessarily reflect Rivervale's views unless clearly stated.

Car related news
18 December 2014
Written by Rivervale
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