Home News Britons may have to take new driving test and get new licence to own self driving cars

Britons may have to take new driving test and get new licence to own self driving cars

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BRITISH motorists could have to take another driving test and get a new license to be able to own a self driving car.

UK drivers may be required to take another driving test and get a new licence to be able to operate and own a driverless car.

While self-driving cars have had a turbulent few months, after the fatal Uber car crash in Arizona, carmakers are still backing the technology to eventually improve safety.

In fact, fully autonomous cars are expected to hit the roads by s early as 2021.

Many new cars are being released with semiautonomous driving features like Tesla’s Autopilot and Nissan’s ProPilot, but these systems still require drivers to be aware and be able to take control any second.

A recent Venturer report by AXA and Burges Salmon found that it takes drivers up to three seconds to regain control when deactivating autonomous mode.

Travelling at the national 70mph speed limit, this is enough to travel up to 308 feet without any control.

Concerns about safety in the case of an accident or if drivers need to regain control has led to issues about establishing blame.

There is much dispute about who would be at fault in the case of a crash.

Insurers could set premiums based on how well a driver can regain control of an autonomous car.

In addition to this, laws preventing people sleeping, reading or watching films could be passed to help improve safety.

David Williams, technical director at AXA UK, commented: “The exciting part about Connected Autonomous Vehicles (CAVs) is that they open up a world of opportunity and mobility for those who may have previously struggled.

“At the same time, it also raises questions regarding practicalities, liability and, most importantly, safety.

“The latest Venturer report investigates just one aspect of the driverless experience – the handover stage – and calls for greater understanding of how motorists will adapt to this new process.”

It has also been recommended that drivers should require taking a new driving test and have to apply for a new licence to be able to operate or own one of these vehicles.

Sarah Sharples, who works at Nottingham University, suggested that drivers should pay attention at all times.

“It may also be necessary for the roll-out of highly autonomous vehicles to be accompanied with the advice, or even law, that in some or all circumstances the driver must maintain attention to the driver situation and that other activities should be minimised or avoided,”

She added that drivers should have “an appropriate level of competence through a driving test”.

“There is a need to consider whether any such driving test includes an understanding of how an autonomous vehicle will behave.”

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