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NTC plans automation consultation with agencies

National Transport Commission on board for planned uniform Australian automated vehicle laws


Australia’s National Transport Commission (NTC) will work with road agencies and transport departments to help develop legislation to administer automated driving systems (ADSs), preparing for the day when they are common.

NTC chief executive Paul Retter said the legislation, due to be in place by 2020, would bring certainty to vehicle manufacturers and operators looking to introduce automated vehicle technologies to Australia.

“With automated vehicles, there will be times when an ‘automated driving system’, rather than a human, will be in control of the vehicle,” he said.

“Without a change to existing laws or new law, there would be no-one to hold responsible for compliance with our road rules when an automated driving system is in control of a vehicle.”

Any new laws would have to be consistent across the nation, he said, to help both manufacturers and the public understand the legal framework these vehicles will operate in.

A uniform law will also provide flexible compliance options and set out any obligations on relevant entities, including the ADS entity, and users of automated vehicles

The announcement follows a decision made by state and federal transport ministers earlier this month at a meeting of the Transport and Infrastructure Council, in which they agreed to pursue a uniform approach to the legislation.

The NTC is also currently seeking public feedback on the safety assurance system proposed for automated vehicles by July 9 – for a report to be considered by transport ministers at a meeting in November.


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