DETROIT — Two horses, without intervention of their riders, would avoid each other if they met on a trail. Transportation has greatly evolved since the days of horse and rider, but is still honoring these most basic principles — technology is soon to come that will ensure two vehicles on the road will behave the same, without need for driver intervention.
|Stephen Regan, Janet Chaney, Ron Reichen and Randy Hanson at CIC in Detroit.|
Stephen Regan, Regan Strategies and CIC Government Relations Committee chair, spoke to CIC attendees on July 29 at the COBO Center in Detroit about the realities of a driverless future on the collision repair industry.
Three types of technology are impacting the industry: 1) in-vehicle crash avoidance systems and/or automated control of safety functions; 2) vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communications supporting crash avoidance applications; and 3) self-driving vehicles.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has five levels of automation: (0) no automation; (1) function specific automation (brake assist, ABS); (2) combined function automation (two systems working together, such as parking assist and automatic braking); (3) limited self-driving automation (driver still has control, but the vehicle can navigate on its own); and (4) full self-driving automation.
Four states — California, Nevada, Florida and Michigan — and the District of Columbia have already passed laws governing self-driving vehicles, with dozens other in consideration, and they aren’t even being sold yet.
Legislation in some cases counteracts existing laws. For example, Nevada and Florida allow texting in automated vehicles, but not in a driver-operated vehicle. Laws are also addressing the OEM liability with autonomous technology systems.