Computer Business Review

Could driverless cars be allowed on Britain’s roads after Highway Code rewrite?

by Joe Curtis| 09 June 2014

Google’s self-driving car is about to get some British competition.

Self-driving cars could soon be ferrying you to work after ministers rewrite the Highway Code to allow them on Britain's roads.

The current law will get updated to legalise self-driving cars in the UK as a Government minister said he was determined that the UK will not be outdone by the California tech giant.

Google has already unveiled a computerised self-driving car that lacks a brake, accelerator or steering wheel, and the tech giant plans to have prototypes ready for testing over summer.

But science minister David Willetts told the Daily Mail that a British self-driving vehicle is in development at Oxford University, which could memorise routes by 'recognising' its surroundings.

Drivers could regain control of the car by tapping the brake pedal.

Willetts told the newspaper: "There is British technology, and it's a lot cheaper than the Google technology. You need a regulatory regime so that these are permitted.

"What America is going to have is a legal regime in California that permits you to travel in one without requiring someone in the so-called driver's seat."

California is expected to grant 'driverless' licenses from September, but Willetts said the Government will review the current law to "ensure there is a clear and appropriate regime for the testing of driverless cars that supports the world's car companies to come hand test them here."

Photo from Wikipedia

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