Government unveils plan to rollout self-driving vehicles on UK roads
Attributed to Dr Siddartha Khastgir, Head of Verification & Validation (V&V) of Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CAVs) at WMG, University of Warwick
At WMG, we are excited about the government’s plan to rollout self-driving vehicles on UK roads by 2025 as it is an important step in the UK’s self-driving vehicle technology journey.
Safety remains one of the biggest challenges around driverless vehicles, so we’re pleased to see the government has taken a proactive and measured approach, keeping safety as a fundamental guiding principle. Research at WMG on the safety of self-driving vehicles has shown that having a strong regulatory approach can act as an enabler for the self-driving vehicle ecosystem, while also preventing unsafe technology being deployed which is key, as it provides guidance in design and performance benchmarks.
However, the success of self-driving vehicles relies largely on the acceptance of this technology by society, so it is vital that we take steps to ensure its introduction is both accessible and equitable, along with focus on consumer education. It is also important to note that, the technology deployments by 2025 will only be possible in targeted areas and in constrained environments such as specific geographies, airports, business parks and predefined routes.
Having a 2025 timeline for a regulatory approach is both ambitious and achievable but, it is important to have such timelines to ensure the UK’s leadership in this sector. To realise all of these targets, we will need to ensure the ecosystem is backed by adequate investment.