After California’s Department of Motor Vehicles recently proposed new regulations governing the testing and deployment of autonomous vehicles, many were left to wonder: Will this help retain the state’s status as a testing and deployment ground for the technology, and will it make California safer?
The answer is… yes and … maybe?
The new regulations would keep California in the game, principally by removing earlier roadblocks to deploying fully driverless vehicles — those that can operate without human-driver intervention.
They also keep the requirements that remain workable, such as requiring manufacturers to obtain testing permits and demonstrate financial responsibility. Twenty-seven companies** are testing autonomous vehicles in the state. These developers didn’t flock to California because of its great regulatory environment — they are here largely because Silicon Valley is home to much of the talent, entrepreneurial ethos and investment startup expertise needed to develop the cars of the future.
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