U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao announced the new guidelines at the University of Michigan's Mcity Test Facility, a 32-acre site where industry and academic researchers evaluate connected and automated vehicles.
The new "Vision for Safety 2.0," which replaces last year's Federal Automated Vehicle Policy, is intended to improve safety, mobility and efficiency through self-driving vehicles, and to facilitate the safe deployment of these vehicles, Chao said.
Huei Peng, director of Mcity and the Roger L. McCarthy Professor of Mechanical Engineering at U-M, and Jim Sayer, director of the U-M Transportation Research Institute, issued the following statement in response:
"The University of Michigan supports the U.S. DOT's new federal guidance for automated vehicles. A Vision for Safety 2.0 is an important step forward, and will help to guide and accelerate the development and testing of self-driving vehicles.
"Traffic deaths and injuries have been rising in recent years, and the adoption of automated vehicles and technologies will help save lives, cut fuel use and emissions, and bring mobility to those who cannot easily access transportation today.
"These technologies can save lives and enrich lives and that's why University of Michigan researchers and their industrial partners continue to provide global leadership in developing and deploying advanced driving system technologies. This new federal guidance will help the United States to secure its leadership position."