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house Bill H.R. 3388

Should the Feds be Responsible for Developing Safety Regulations For Self-Driving Cars?

Argument in favor

The federal government needs to clarify its role in regulating the design and safety of self-driving cars, while leaving things like registration, insurance, and law enforcement to states. Differing state safety regulations would make interstate commerce & travel difficult.

Mason's Opinion
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09/06/2017
I support federal standardization but I have very little faith in congresses ability to develop sensible regulation. The reason for my distinct lack of faith is due to the fact that of the 435 representatives only 4 have Computer Science or related degrees.
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Henry's Opinion
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09/06/2017
There should be one standard set of regulations for self-driving cars across the entire country
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Joseph's Opinion
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09/05/2017
If the Feds don't do the regulations, there will be 50 set of them. Look at auto insurance. Compare MA with any other state. Or California CARB regs with MI regs.
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Argument opposed

States should be able to develop their own regulations for self-driving cars even if differing requirements from state-to-state impede interstate commerce or travel.

TuckerWantsLiberty's Opinion
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09/06/2017
You know what the best safety regulation for self-driving vehicles is? The threat that if someone gets into a major wreck while a computer is at the wheel there will be (1) a major lawsuit, (2) an irreparable hit to a brand, and (3) the whole self-driving vehicle industry will be wiped out from blown consumer confidence and all that time and money invested will have gone to waste. You don't get better regulation than that. That's the free market. It does all of that regulation faster and more cost-effectively than the government ever could. You don't need the government for this.
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Lukas's Opinion
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09/06/2017
The government will only slow things down. The companies making these cars should be responsible for the proper safety precautions so they can get on the road as soon as possible
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Drew's Opinion
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09/06/2017
What does the government know about that sort of technology? They don't even understand basic economics.
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What is House Bill H.R. 3388?

This bill — known as the SELF DRIVE Act — would clarify the federal role in ensuring the safety of highly automated vehicles (HAVs, aka self-driving cars) and create a path for the safe testing, development, and deployment of HAVs. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) would be responsible for regulating the safety of the design, construction, and performance of self-driving cars to avoid requirements that would prohibit or limit interstate commerce and travel.

The NHTSA would be required to develop a rule for HAV standards and establish safety assessment certifications for manufacturers. It would establish a federal advisory council on HAVs to ensure manufacturers and regulators understand the needs of populations traditionally underserved by public transportation as well as senior citizens and individuals with disabilities. NHTSA would also have expanded access to safety data for future updates and development of safety standards.

Manufacturers would be required to comply with cybersecurity plans and make manufacturers that fail to comply subject to civil penalties. Exemptions would be granted to manufacturers to existing regulations in order to develop features of HAVs that meet & exceed those standards and overall safety level of nonexempt vehicles. Up to 25,00 exempt vehicles could be manufactured in the first 12-month period; up 50,000 could be made in the second period; and 100,000 in each of the third and fourth periods. Exemption renewals couldn’t exceed 100,000 within a 12-month period.

NHTSA would also be required to develop a rule regarding a system to alert drivers about unattended passengers in the back seat of vehicles. This provision is identical to the HOT CARS Act.

States would continue to control vehicle registration, licensing, driving education and training, insurance, law enforcement, crash investigations, safety & emissions inspections, congestion management, and traffic laws & regulations.

The bill’s full title is the Safely Ensuring Lives Future Deployment and Research in Vehicle Evolution Act.

Impact

Those who would manufacture or use self-driving cars; state regulators; and the NHTSA.

Cost of House Bill H.R. 3388

$10.00 Million
The CBO estimates that enacting this bill would cost $10 million over the 2018-2022 period.

More Information

In-DepthThis legislation passed the House Energy & Commerce on a unanimous 54-0 vote, and has the support of one Democratic cosponsor. Following the passage of the bill, Chairman Greg Walden (R-OR) said:

“I truly believe the bipartisan bill-drafting process for self-driving legislation is an example of our committee at its best — working together to pursue the common goal of saving lives. Our aim was to develop a regulatory structure that allows for industry to safely innovate with significant government oversight — as safety must be the chief priority. And I believe today’s legislation strikes that critical balance.”

Media:

Summary by Eric Revell

(Photo Credit: chombosan / iStock)

AKA

Safely Ensuring Lives Future Deployment and Research In Vehicle Evolution Act

Official Title

To amend title 49, United States Code, regarding the authority of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration over highly automated vehicles, to provide safety measures for such vehicles, and for other purposes

bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The senate has not voted
      senate Committees
      Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation
  • The house Passed September 6th, 2017
    Passed by Voice Vote
      house Committees
      Committee on Energy and Commerce
    IntroducedJuly 25th, 2017

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    I support federal standardization but I have very little faith in congresses ability to develop sensible regulation. The reason for my distinct lack of faith is due to the fact that of the 435 representatives only 4 have Computer Science or related degrees.
    Like (131)
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    Share
    You know what the best safety regulation for self-driving vehicles is? The threat that if someone gets into a major wreck while a computer is at the wheel there will be (1) a major lawsuit, (2) an irreparable hit to a brand, and (3) the whole self-driving vehicle industry will be wiped out from blown consumer confidence and all that time and money invested will have gone to waste. You don't get better regulation than that. That's the free market. It does all of that regulation faster and more cost-effectively than the government ever could. You don't need the government for this.
    Like (82)
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    There should be one standard set of regulations for self-driving cars across the entire country
    Like (60)
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    If the Feds don't do the regulations, there will be 50 set of them. Look at auto insurance. Compare MA with any other state. Or California CARB regs with MI regs.
    Like (54)
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    Self-driving vehicles are essentially a form of public transportation and standards for certain aspects of their operation on the nation's highway system should conform to federal standards.
    Like (33)
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    Having a vehicle that has different regulations in one state and different regulations in another is ridiculous, millions of cars cross state borders every day so they should be regulated by the Federal Government just like Interstate Commerce is.
    Like (31)
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    The government will only slow things down. The companies making these cars should be responsible for the proper safety precautions so they can get on the road as soon as possible
    Like (22)
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    Are we assuming that the "Feds" include someone knowledgeable, unlike the current heads of most departments, like Education, etc.?
    Like (22)
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    Yes there needs to be some consistency on regulations throughout the US
    Like (16)
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    What does the government know about that sort of technology? They don't even understand basic economics.
    Like (15)
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    If you leave it the states than you risk establishing an unbalanced system with vastly different rules and preferences. Set some common sense and broad guidelines. States can harshen if they desire.
    Like (14)
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    Congress doesn't know enough about the car industry, economics and computer science to make such a ruling. The regulations need to be up to the companies who created the designs and know how they work.
    Like (11)
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    No!! Self driving cars need to follow the rules of the road. Manufacturers should be financially responsible for any issues. Federal regulations will get off track and mandate other things that have nothing to do with the cars. Keep the legislators on important issues.
    Like (8)
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    Yes, the alternative is to turn over control to some form of capitalist zealots who believe industry can be self regulating while externalizing all the costs that would actually create such limitations.
    Like (8)
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    The Feds are taking over every aspect of our daily lives and this is just one more I SAY NO
    Like (8)
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    The federal government has no role in regulating automobiles. Their onerous EPA rules and mandating that Ethanol be added to gasoline is ruining cars. This is a state issue. Keep the government out of our cars.
    Like (6)
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    Auto manufacturing competition and the threat of lawsuits and a big hit on the "self-driving industry" itself should ensure the highest levels of safety standards. The government should not get involved until proven necessary.
    Like (6)
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    The government is corrupt, and will regulate accordingly.
    Like (6)
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    I'm not a big fan of Big Government. When did Government become experts in building cars? They're not. They only want the money.. Vote NO.
    Like (6)
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    The feds have proved themselves incompetent
    Like (6)
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