Melbourne: On 11 August, the government of Victoria, Australia, announced their decision to run trials of self-driving vehicles on 2 of the State’s major connecting motorways, the and . The trial is to use autonomous vehicles from automobile companies including , , , and . The two-year trial is to have three phases.
The cars are to drive alongside commuters but, in public testing, a driver is always to be present, as the Victorian law requires drivers always keep a hand on the steering wheel. However, in occasional closures of the, with no other drivers to endanger, the cars are to be tested with nobody in the vehicle.
“Victoria is at the forefront of automated vehicle technology — we’re investing in this trial to explore ways that this technology can be used to reduce crashes and keep people safe on our roads”, said, the Victorian Minister for Roads and Road Safety. He noted, “90% of the fault of accidents is human error […] so we know that if we can take out human error, we will have less (sic) accidents”.
Tim Hansen, Victoria Police’s Acting Assistant Commissioner, said that police had founded a project team to investigate how self-driving vehicles would change policing on roads. “Can we intercept vehicles more safely to avoid pursuits and ramming?”, he asked.
The trial is a partnership between the state government, Victoria’s road management authority, owner of the CityLink toll road , and insurance company .
From Wikinews under Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 licence
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