The technology is good to go, now the only thing standing between us and allowing our cars to do more of, or all of the driving, are the legalities of autonomous car use.
For example, if an autonomous car is breaking the speed limit, who is responsible? The vehicle manufacturer? The person inside the car?
But that might just be getting close to being settled with the nations transport ministers signing off on an agreement to have autonomous car regulations in place across the country by 2020.
The topic of autonomous cars was on the agenda of the Transport and Infrastructure Council meeting held last Friday.
Chief Executive of the National Transport Commission (NTC), Paul Retter tells us there was agreement on the need to get these issues sorted.
“Ministers have agreed to a goal of having an end-to-end regulatory system in place by 2020 to support the safe, commercial deployment of automated vehicles at all levels of automation.
“This is an important milestone towards that goal.
“Australia is one of the first countries to make this bold commitment to 2020. We want to give certainty to manufacturers by ensuring our regulatory system is flexible and responsive to encourage innovation.”
The National Enforcement Guidelines provide guidance to police for applying the road rules to automated vehicles.
“These guidelines provide clarity around who is in control of a vehicle at different levels of automation.
“They confirm that a human driver is responsible for the driving task when conditional automation is engaged,” Mr Retter said.
“They also determine that having hands on the wheel is no longer an indicator of having proper control when conditional automation is safely engaged.”
We will keep you updated with further info on autonomous vehicles in our Car News section as details come to hand.