Tell the DMV: No Safety Shortcuts for Autonomous Vehicles

The future of San Francisco’s streets will include autonomous vehicles. They will likely revolutionize how people move around our city, regardless of the mode they choose. They also have the potential to reduce traffic collisions that result in serious injuries and fatalities, which devastate too many families and cost SF taxpayers millions in trauma care costs. As of today, however, that potential remains unrealized.

In order to realize the potential of autonomous vehicles, we need to make sure that companies who manufacture and operate them do so safely and responsibly. That’s why we’re speaking up for comprehensive regulations that prioritize the wellbeing of the most vulnerable road-users. And we need your help to make sure state officials hear that message.

As directed by the California State Legislature and Gov. Brown, the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) adopted regulations in 2014 for the testing and deployment of autonomous vehicles. With technology moving forward aggressively, those regulations are up for wholesale revisions.

Your San Francisco Bicycle Coalition has closely read through the regulations and we are working to draft a letter to the DMV with the following recommendations:

  1. Autonomous vehicle technology must protect the most vulnerable road-users: people who bike and walk.
  2. Local governments need support as this technology develops.
  3. Data must be openly shared and analyzed to understand the impact of autonomous vehicles on our city’s streets and our communities.
  4. Autonomous vehicle test-drivers must be educated with training about how to operate safely around people walking and biking.
  5. Loopholes in the current regulations should be closed so that there is a clear determination of the autonomous vehicles to which regulations apply.

Now is the time to speak up and let the California DMV know that the safety of people who bike and walk is important to you when considering the development of autonomous vehicle technology.

Will you join us in pushing our state regulatory agencies to hold companies like Uber accountable?

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