At a public workshop attended by state workers, lobbyists, safety advocates, and more than 100 car manufacturers, Google counseled the California DMV not to establish a government process for appraising the safety of driverless cars.
They wouldn't know how, Google representatives implied, insinuating that the technology behind autonomous vehicles would be too intricate for representatives of state government to understand and thus regulate. As the SF Business Times reports, Google seems awfully concerned that overregulation could hamstring their plans to roll out driverless cars by 2020. "This is a dangerous route you are taking," Bryan Salesky, program manager for Google's self-driving cars unit, reportedly said to potential regulators, suggesting instead that the company show regulators its own safety processes. Okay, Google.
"The DMV is not in the best position to evaluate the safety of any one of these products," Salesky went on, "Safety is built into the product from day one. It's something that is organic to what we do." According to the Business Times, he described the idea of bringing in a third-party safety contractor "naive." Don't worry, folks, they've got this.
The DMV has already released regulations on the testing of autonomous vehicles, but then missed a deadline for a second set of regulations required by Jan 1, reports Ars Technica. As a result, Tuesday's meeting was critical for the DMV, since the federal government currently has no safety standards for driverless vehicles.