The U.S. Department of Transportation and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) have released new federal guidance for Automated Driving Systems (ADS): A Vision for Safety 2.0. NHTSA has said that autonomous drive systems have the potential to reduce the number of accidents and thus save lives as well as economic losses due to these. In the document, NHTSA claims that they expect “fully automated safety features” and “highway autopilot” in the years 2025.
The document released, calls for industry, state and local governments, safety and mobility advocates and the public to lay the path for the deployment of automated vehicles and technologies. It builds on the previous policy and incorporates feedback received through public comments and Congressional hearings.
A Vision for Safety 2.0 paves the way for the safe deployment of advanced driver assistance technologies by providing voluntary guidance that encourages best practices and prioritizes safety. The document also provides technical assistance to States and best practices for policymakers.
Some of the features of the guidelines are:
- Focuses on SAE International Levels of Automation 3-5 – Automated Driving Systems (ADSs) – Conditional, High, and Full Automation);
- Clarifies the guidance process and that entities do not need to wait to test or deploy their ADSs;
- Revises unnecessary design elements from the safety self-assessment;
- Aligns Federal Guidance with the latest developments and industry terminology;
- Clarifies Federal and State roles going forward.
- As automated technologies advance, so will the Department’s guidance. It is intended to be flexible and to evolve as technology does. In fact, DOT and NHTSA are already planning for 3.0. A Vision for Safety is the newest version replacing previous guidance and offers a more flexible approach to advancing the innovation of automated vehicle safety technologies.
The full document can be accessed here