Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao announced the proposed guidelines in a speech at the CES gadget show in Las Vegas, saying in prepared remarks that “AV 4.0” will ensure U.S. leadership in developing new technologies.
But the guidelines fall short of expectations of auto safety advocates and the National Transportation Safety Board. In November, the NTSB, which investigates crashes and makes safety recommendations, condemned a lack of state and federal regulation for testing autonomous vehicles.
The NTSB said Chao’s department failed to lead in regulating the new technology and put autonomous vehicle advancement ahead of saving lives.
In her remarks, Chao said that AV 4.0, a joint effort between her department and the White House, unifies autonomous vehicle work across 38 federal departments and agencies. It also establishes a list of government principles and says that safety is her department’s No. 1 priority.
“It recognizes the value of private sector leadership in AV research, development and integration,” she said.
The principles include protecting users and communities, promoting efficient markets by protecting intellectual property and modernizing regulations, and facilitating coordinated standards and policies.
“The goals are simple, clear and consistent,” she said. “Improve safety, security and quality of life for all Americans.”
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