May 17, 2021
The UK government have advised that vehicles fitted with automated lane keeping technology could legally be defined as self-driving if they receive GB Type approval.
Current automated lane keeping systems alert you when you are drifting out of the lane markings and if necessary can turn the wheel to prevent you from leaving the lane. The technology the government is looking at takes this a step further, with the vehicle taking control of steering to ensure your vehicle is safely positioned in a lane and maintains it without needing you to steer the car.
They’re designed for use on motorways in slow-moving traffic and are usually limited to speeds of around 37 mph to ensure that they maintain a safe speed.
This technology claims to improve road safety by reducing human error which is a contributing factor in over 85% of accidents on UK roads.
In order for automated lane keeping system technology to be legally defined as self-driving the government have advised that as well as receiving GB type approval there cannot be any evidence that challenges the vehicle’s ability to self-drive.
The use of screens will go into consultation later in the year and we will need to await the outcome of the Law Commission review before the government can change UK legislation to allow people to really utilise self-drive technology.
If the proposed new laws are approved then drivers would no longer need to keep their hands on the wheel while the system was active.
To have your say on self-driving technology then just click here for the consultation on proposals to amend the Highway Code.