MEPs call for safety and liability rules for driverless cars

driverless cars 2019

© Unknown , 2019 / Source: EC – Audiovisual Service

This article is brought to you in association with the European Parliament.


MEPs welcome focus on automated mobility, but call for further efforts to ensure road safety and support for EU industry.

Europe has to be innovative, but faster. China and the USA are not waiting,” said rapporteur Wim Van de Camp (EPP, NL). Several countries around the world are moving rapidly towards making both connected and automated mobility available on the market and the EU needs to respond much faster to the developments in the sector, MEPs say in a non-binding resolution adopted with 585 in favour, 85 against, 26 abstentions.

They welcome the European Commission’s communication “On the road to automated mobility” as an important milestone in the EU strategy for connected and automated mobility, but stress that further efforts are needed to ensure that there is sufficient funding to support the sector and that there are appropriate safety and liability rules.

MEPs urge the Commission and EU countries to work to maintain a leading role in the international technical harmonisation of automated vehicles within the framework of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) and the Vienna Convention.

Safeguard systems to allow automated vehicles and vehicles which are neither connected nor automated to co-exist also need to be developed, they stress.

Rules on automation for other modes of transport

MEPs also want the Commission to present detailed rules for automated aircraft and to define the levels of automation for both inland and sea navigation in order to stimulate the uptake of autonomous vessels. Standards should also be developed to enable autonomous train and light-rail systems, they say.

A joint partnership (Joint Undertaking), along similar lines to Shift2Rail for rail transport and CleanSky for the aeronautics industry, to create an industry-driven strategic initiative on autonomous transport should be set up, MEPs add.

Research should focus also on the long-term effects of autonomous transport on issues such as consumer adaptation, societal acceptance, physiological reactions, physical responses and reducing accidents.

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