The big takeaways from The Autonomous Vehicle Safety Regulation World Congress centered on the importance of a federal scheme for AV regulation and the reality of the states’ interest in traditional issues such as traffic enforcement, product liability, and insurance coverage. In keeping with those messages, the World Congress kicked off with NHTSA Deputy Administrator and Acting Director, Heidi King, speaking about NHTSA’s goals and interest followed almost immediately with wide participation from the states including California, Michigan, and Pennsylvania, among others.
Deputy Administrator King emphasized NHTSA’s desire to foster an environment of collaboration among all stakeholders, including the states. Ms. King emphasized that safety remains the top priority at NHTSA. NHTSA has provided some guidance, and looks forward to hearing from stakeholders about the best way to support and encourage growth in autonomous vehicles. NHTSA wants to provide a flexible frame work to keep the door open for private sector innovation. It is necessary to build public trust and confidence in the safety of autonomous vehicles, and that can only accomplished by all stakeholders working together.