California is the first to test drive one of Google’s self-driving cars on the roads. However, California requires that the car be manned by a human passenger.
Governor Edmond “Jerry” Brown signed the autonomous-vehicles bill into law Tuesday afternoon. Google co-founder Sergey Brin and State Sen. Alex Padilla were present during the signing.
Bill SB 1298 will set procedures and requirements to determine if the cars are road-ready.
The car uses technologies that allow the car to steer itself. Radar sensors, video cameras, artificial intelligence software are just a few of the technologies implemented in the car.
Brin says he hopes that in five years, the public can start using the self-driving cars.
Google has been testing the self-driving cars in Nevada. The state also passed a law authorizing driverless vehicles. However, both Nevada and California require that the cars have a person behind the wheel as a safety precaution.
The cars have accumulated 300,000 driving miles. Around 50,000 of those miles were done without human intervention, Google says.
So far there have been no accidents reported while the cars were controlled by computer. The only time an accident occurred with one of the Google cars was when a human was in control.
Google’s self-driving fleet started with the Toyota Prius Hybrids. They later added the Lexus RX450h. The project is headed by Sebastian Thrun who was also behind Google Street View.
When Brin was asked who would get a ticket if a driverless car runs a red light, he replied, “Self-driving cars do not run red lights.”
So, does that mean we won’t need to get a driver’s license in the future? What do you think?