Who Will License Cars Driven By Computers? The Licensing Dilemma of Self-Driving Cars

I have previously blogged on self-driving cars and the dangers they pose to Oregonians.  Currently Oregon does not have any current rules, regulations, or laws governing self-driving cars.  Most states are like Oregon and are lagging behind the technology.  This is dangerous, because by the time Salem cuts through their gridlock to figure out how to regulate a tech-industry, the technology will have most likely morphed into something entirely different.  As a result, the Obama Administration recently affirmed they intend on exercising Federal Authority to regulate self-driving vehicle technology. 

Video-from Youtube and Google-We started designing the world's first fully self-driving vehicle to transform mobility, making it easier, safer and more enjoyable for everyone to get around. Now we're ready for the next step of our project: this summer, our prototype vehicles will leave the test track and hit the familiar roads of Mountain View, California, with our safety drivers aboard.

This is an interesting issue, because traditionally Oregon and other states have regulated drivers.   However things change when the car is driven by a computer.  Many states don't have the infrastructure, resources, and tech savvy employees that can implement meaningful policy guidelines.   Many States are becoming very close with driver-less car manufacturers in hopes to spur economic growth.  For example, Michigan is considering auto manufacturers to allow drive-less car testing on roads, but the cars would not need brakes or pedals.  

Also, if different states promulgate different driver-less car rules then it may prevent driver-less cars from interstate travel.  This may impair interstate commerce. It will be interesting to see how this plays out.   I anticipate some heavy handed litigation between manufacturers, the federal government, and State and Local governments.   

If you, or someone you know, has been in  a crash with a driver-less car or self-driving car, please call me at 503.224.1658.   Ross Law LLC is happy to provide free personal injury consultations.  Also, Ross Law does not collect a fee in personal injury cases unless you recover from the at-fault party. Please remember that the law is constantly changing, and this article may be outdated.  Also, this article, this blog, and this web-site is not intended to be legal advice.  This post may be considered ATTORNEY ADVERTISING!