Government ministers will launch the UK’s driverless car trials in the Royal Borough of Greenwich – the location chosen for one of the Government-backed projects, in which RSA is the insurance partner.
The announcement said the “trials officially get underway at Greenwich Peninsula with the inaugural journey of the aptly named Meridian Shuttle. To mark the event, Business Secretary Vince Cable and Transport Minister Claire Perry will be in attendance.
“Led by Transport Research Laboratory, GATEway (Greenwich Automated Transport Environment project) is one of three projects chosen by the Government to deliver demonstrations of automated vehicles in urban environments.”
The trial is set to “include the testing of the Meridian Shuttle, which will be evaluated in various scenarios over the next two years. A number of important factors will be evaluated throughout the project to assist the UK in pioneering the development and implementation of this technology.”
The bulletin explained that over the next two years the “GATEway project will demonstrate automated transport systems in a range of environments, explore the legal and technical changes required to introduce automated vehicles and analyze the reactions of pedestrians, drivers and other road users to automated vehicles.”
Kenny Leitch, RSA’s Global Telematics Director, commented: “Driverless cars will have a profound impact on all elements of the motoring industry. Within insurance, they will fundamentally change our service model and it’s important that we understand the implications of automated vehicles and adapt so that we can provide products and services that are suitable for our customers when this technology enters the market.
“These trials will provide us with invaluable insight into how this technology will operate and by working closely with the Government, industry experts, drivers and pedestrians, we can ensure that we successfully maximize the benefits and tackle any potential challenges,” he added. “In doing so, we will ensure that the UK leads the way in its adoption of the technology.”
In addition to RSA, the GATEway project is made up of a consortium of ten members including the Royal Borough of Greenwich, Shell, Telefonica and the University of Greenwich.
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