We refer to Mr Ng Lee Meng’s letter “What if driverless cars got into accidents” (Straits Times, 20 January).
The Land Transport Authority closely tracks the advancement of autonomous vehicle (AV) technology worldwide to see how AVs can meet our future transport needs. Previously, we had approved the trial of driverless vehicles within the campuses of the National University of Singapore and Nanyang Technological University by their respective research institutions. The AV test bed in one-north will build on these ongoing efforts, and give us the opportunity to learn and understand the technical capabilities and infrastructural requirements for driverless vehicles to operate safely on public roads.
Participants of the trial in one-north will need to comply with a safety framework that LTA and one-north’s developer, JTC, have drawn up to ensure the safety of all road users.
Under these requirements, a qualified driver must always be on board when the AV is tested. He is responsible for the safe operation of the AV and will be required to take control of the vehicle if necessary during the test runs. The test vehicles also have to be fitted with data recorders to keep track of information such as the date and time of the test, as well as the speed of the vehicle. In the event of an incident, information from the recorders can be used to assist in the investigation.
All participating companies also need to ensure that their test vehicles have the necessary insurance coverage.
We thank Mr Ng for the opportunity to clarify.
Helen Lim (Ms)
Director, Media Relations
Land Transport Authority