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Ambitious autonomous vehicles framework

dusk road

The newly-announced Automated Vehicles Bill will set a rigorous safety framework for self-driving vehicles, with safety at its core, the Government says. Unveiled during the King’s Speech, the bill is designed to ‘unlock a transport revolution’ by enabling the safe deployment of self-driving vehicles.  

The Government says self-driving vehicles will make transport safer, more convenient and more accessible, improving the lives of millions of people. With 88% of collisions currently involving human error, it adds that the potential for automated vehicles to reduce costs, injuries, and fatalities is ‘enormous’.   

The bill will set the threshold for self-driving vehicles in law. Only vehicles that can drive themselves safely and can follow all road traffic rules without the need for a human to monitor or control the vehicle to maintain that level of safety will be classified as self-driving and allowed on UK roads.   

The DfT and its agencies will be given new powers to authorise these vehicles and ensure in-use compliance with the safety standards that will be set.  

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