Connecticut’s Fully Autonomous Vehicle Testing Pilot Program, an initiative lawmakers created last year, has been officially launched.
Under the terms of the program, towns and cities interested in participating and allowing the testing of fully autonomous, or “driverless,” vehicles on their roadways must submit an application to the state. Upon review, up to four municipalities will be selected for participation.
“Make no mistake, autonomous vehicles are the future of transportation, whether it is people looking for a safer and easier commute, more efficient and cheaper commercial transit, more precise ride-sharing and for-hire services, or beyond,” Governor Dan Malloy said. “These vehicles are going to be part of our lives soon and we want to take proactive steps to have our state be at the forefront of this innovative technology.
“We are showing this industry and those around the country that we promote the development of these kinds of forward-thinking, technology-driven products in Connecticut,” he added. “We cannot allow our state to be outpaced as this technology grows.”
The program includes strict standards on the testing of vehicles, only allowing them in limited and controlled testing areas. Participating municipalities will have to enter into agreements with autonomous vehicle testers.
The program is being administered by the Office of Policy and Management in consultation with the Department of Motor Vehicles, the Department of Transportation, the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection, and the Connecticut Insurance Department.
To apply, interested municipalities must submit an application to OPM, which is available to download on the agency’s website. Municipalities that intend to apply are strongly urged to notify the point-of-contact listed on OPM’s website of their intent to submit an application as soon as possible.