To overcome the existing legal barriers to the deployment of automated transport systems, CityMobil2 will identify the right compromises for a harmonisation of the legal framework at EU level and to develop a validation and certification framework for fully automated vehicles.
The Vienna Convention on road traffic (1968) still represents a "de facto” obstacle for automated vehicles on the roads. Furthermore, national road and vehicle regulations (harmonised with the European Directives) include continuous references to the driver, his/her duties and liabilities. The vehicle manufacturer’s approach to automated transport systems is to "wait and see” i.e. "let us first develop the technology that would allow automated vehicles to operate on normal roads wherever safely and conveniently then the market might (or might not) force a legal change”.
However, as clearly shown by CityMobil, automated transport systems are here now, and can work, and even be certified, under the responsibility and the initiative of local or national authorities. Examples of that are: the Rivium system in the Netherlands which had a temporary waiver from the local authorities to run for the last seven years; the Rome demonstration of CityMobil which had a preliminary permanent licence from the Italian Ministry of Transport; and most progressive of all, the La Rochelle demonstration of CityMobil was allowed in an unprotected environment by an "Arrêté” (local law) of the city’s Mayor who was able to take on the necessary legal responsibilities on behalf of the city.
These experiences show how certification of automated vehicles is done on a local basis; there is no common EC initiative to regulate this matter. CityMobil2 aims to identify the right compromises for a harmonisation of the legal framework at EU level and to develop a validation and certification framework for fully automated vehicles. A dedicated working group, coordinated by ERTICO – ITS Europe, has been established involving key stakeholder representatives and experts in the field who have contributed to the past and recent technological developments. Analysis of current needs towards validation and certification will be investigated and identified in close cooperation with public authorities (cities, certification bodies, relevant ministries).