Consumers Union, the advocacy division of Consumer Reports, welcomes the opportunity to submit written comments to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) regarding the development of vehicles with automated driving systems (ADSs), following up on our oral comments delivered to the agency on March 6, 2018. We appreciate NHTSA’s attention to these vehicles, and support an open dialogue between the agency and stakeholders. At the same time, we urge the agency to remain focused on its statutory mission. Instead of an expansive focus addressing supposed “regulatory barriers,” NHTSA should accelerate its critical role in reducing traffic deaths and injuries by prescribing new motor vehicle safety standards and carrying out needed safety research and development to ensure that both self-driving cars and human-driven cars are safe. Recent events—including fatal crashes within the last month of a self-driving Uber test vehicle in Arizona and the crash of a Tesla in California with the Autopilot driver-assist suite engaged—provide tragic examples of the importance, and urgency, of this work.
For the full comments, click here.