U.S. regulators open process to ensure self-driving car safety

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. auto safety regulators on Thursday said they were opening a formal regulatory proceeding that could eventually result in the adoption of new safety standards for autonomous vehicles.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) said it was issuing an advance notice of proposed rulemaking to get public input on how to ensure the safety of future self-driving vehicles. Companies like General Motors Co, Alphabet Inc’s Waymo and Tesla Inc are working on vehicles that can drive themselves.

“This rulemaking will help address legitimate public concerns about safety, security and privacy without hampering innovation in the development of automated driving systems,” said U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao in a statement.

NHTSA said the proceeding could result in the agency issuing new guidance documents addressing best industry practices, providing information to consumers or formal regulations including rules requiring reporting and disclosures to new legally binding safety standards on automated driving systems. Any final rules are still likely years away.

The agency said it is focused on key primary functions for self-driving systems including how use sensors; detect other road users; plans routes; makes decisions on how to respond appropriately to road users and execute driving functions.Reuters News

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