The February 2019 edition of Eckert Seamans’ Autonomous Vehicle Legislative Survey is now available at this link.  Updates at the national, state, and city levels are summarized below. (An expanded summary is available at this link.)

National

The U.S. Department of Transportation issued Automated Vehicles 3.0: Preparing for the Future of Transportation October 2018. The federal guidance is designed to prioritize safety, encourage a consistent regulatory environment, prepare proactively for automation, and promote the modernization of regulatory frameworks.

States

  • Minnesota: The Governor’s Advisory Council on Connected and Automated Vehicles released an executive report in December 2018. House File No 242 was introduced January 2019 to establish a microtransit rideshare pilot program.
  • Missouri: Senate Bill No. 186 was introduced January 2019 to permit vehicle platooning.
  • Nebraska: Legislative Bill No. 521 was introduced January 2019 to allow AV operations.
  • New Jersey: Senate Joint Resolution No. 105 was introduced in November 2018 to establish an Advanced AV Task Force.
  • New Mexico: Senate Bill No. 332 was introduced January 2019 to authorize the use of AVs and platooning.
  • New York: Several AV-related bills were introduced January 2019 aiming to: (a) establish the New York State AV Task Force to study AV usage; (b) require a study on the potential impact of driverless vehicles on occupations and employment; (c) set forth drivers’ license requirements for operating an AV; and (d) authorize New York’s enrollment in any federal pilot program for the collection of transportation data, including AV projects.
  • North Dakota: Numerous bills dealing with autonomous vehicles have been introduced: (a) House Bill 1418 relates to automated vehicle network companies and autonomous vehicle operations in the state; (b) House Bill 1197 reintroducing a revised version of a previously defeated Bill regarding ownership of autonomous vehicular technology; and (c) House Bill 1543 addressing requirements of having insurance, surety bond, a human driver and ability to engage and disengage the autonomous mode required to test autonomous vehicles.
  • Ohio: The House Transportation and Public Safety Committee released a report on autonomous and connected vehicles in December 2018 regarding the findings of its 14-month study, which completed hearings and stakeholder meetings earlier that year.
  • Oklahoma: For the first time, the Oklahoma state legislature is addressing autonomous vehicles. Senate Bill 365 calls for establishing the Oklahoma Driving Automation System Uniformity Act, which would give the legislature the final say on autonomous laws in the state.
  • Rhode Island: The state’s DOT selected Michigan-based May Mobility to operate a self-driving bus pilot program for one year.
  • Texas: Two bills addressing self-driving car laws have been introduced in 2019: House Bill 119 would increase liability of manufacturers in the event of a crash involving an automated vehicle; and House Bill 113 would require providers to equip vehicles with a failure alert system and the latest software.

Cities

  • Austin: Joined select cities and transportation agencies around the world to pilot a new autonomous vehicle deployment platform called INRIX AV Road Rules. Austin began allowing autonomous shuttles to operate within the city, launching the nation’s largest autonomous bus pilot program last fall.
  • Lincoln: Later this year, the city plans to debut a pilot Autonomous Shuttle Project that will leverage its “smart” traffic and high-speed data infrastructure.
  • Pittsburgh: The city agreed to allow Uber to begin testing its vehicles again within the city.  However, city officials are in safety talks with Uber and four other entities that have permits to test autonomous vehicles.
  • San Antonio: The city issued a Request for Information in July 2018 to develop an autonomous vehicle pilot program and will soon issue a request for proposals for autonomous vehicle testing.

Regular updates to Eckert Seamans’ Automated Vehicles Legislative Survey will be released quarterly.  Subscribe to this the blog to stay up to date on developments regarding the AV landscape in the United States and for notification when the next update is released.