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Driverless Car Testing on Sacramento Roads

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October 20, 2017
Edward Smith

File:Jurvetson Google driverless car trimmed.jpg

Driverless Car Testing on Sacramento Roads

I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento Car Accident Lawyer. Officials in the state capitol have released new rules regulating how driverless vehicle tests can be conducted on public roadways.

Getting Behind the Wheel

Over the next weeks, state regulators will take public comments on the new regulations permitting driverless cars to be tested without a licensed driver in the driver’s seat. Prior versions of the law required driverless vehicles to be chaperoned by a human driver who could presumably override the car’s computer and take control of the vehicle in emergency situations. Per the Department of Motor Vehicles’ (DMV) latest proposal will allow manufactures to test their vehicles without any people in the car. Driverless vehicles being tested on public roads will still need a remote operator that monitors the vehicle while it is being computer controlled.

Capitol Support

City officials have invited manufactures to test their cars in the state capitol, hoping the city will help incubate the new technology and be on the cutting edge of transportation advancement.

Under the proposed regulations, driverless cars will be allowed to be tested without any people onboard as long as the testing company notifies and coordinates with the city where the test is being conducted, maintains a communication link with a remote operator, and mechanisms for police deactivation and ownership information are in place, among other technical stipulations.

A New Age of Automobiles

Industry leaders believe that fully autonomous vehicles are still years away from the public marketplace, but that manufactures might start commercially deploying autonomous vehicles in the near future. Many manufacturers have already incorporated technology developed for self-driving vehicles into driver aids and safety features like lane departure warning systems.

Safety Risk or Benefit?

Autonomous cars have been tested extensively on the streets of Mountain View and other Bay Area locales for several years now with only a handful of mostly minor collisions reported. Catastrophically, a Tesla driver was killed after failing to respond to warnings from his semi-autonomous car (in ‘pilot mode’) crashed into a truck.

Proponents of self-driving technology still believe that autonomous vehicles are still safer than traditional cars because they remove the human-error factor potential for accidents.

Related Articles by Sacramento Car Accident Lawyer, Ed Smith

Sacramento Car Accident Lawyer

I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento Car Accident Lawyer. Have you or someone close to you been injured in a car accident because of another person’s negligence? Please call me today (916) 921-6400 or (800) 404-5400 for free and friendly advice. I am also available online at

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Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons, Google Driverless Car by Steve Jurvetson. CC BY-SA 2.0
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