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Safety agency adjustments welcomed by self-driving car makers

It’s akin to a great divide.

We suspect at Simien & Simien that readers of our legal personal injury blogs in Louisiana and other states will solidly align on both sides of what is truly a wide difference in opinion.

The subject matter: the high-profile development of autonomous (that is, self-driving) vehicles that are destined to dominate the nation’s roadways in the future. A core concern regarding that figurative and literal drive toward change stresses the timing involved with getting those cars and trucks out onto streets and highways.

On the one hand, broad-based safety advocates continually urge a go-slow approach. They want to see essential safeguards unconditionally proved in a systematic and finalized way before clearance is given for autonomous vehicles to operate freely across the United States.

On the other hand, though, vehicle makers continue to express dismay with what they say are many and unnecessary regulatory hurdles that block progress. Executives in companies like General Motors, Ford Motor Co. and Uber Technologies persistently lament what they cite as overly restrictive rules and standards that stymie development and straitjacket an inevitable new wave of economic progress.

Federal officials from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recently waded into the fray. A national article spotlighting agency action notes the NHTSA’s proposed “sweeping changes to U.S. safety requirements to speed the deployment of self-driving vehicles without human controls.”

A key aspect to note is that many of the proposals link to vehicles that will be used only for the delivery and will have no passengers.

We will delve into some relevant details in an upcoming blog post.

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