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April 3, 2018 11:30 AM, EDT

California Starts Accepting Applications for Driverless Car Permits

General Motors Co.

California began accepting applications April 2 for permits to deploy self-driving cars on public roads without a human backup driver at the wheel.

Recent fatal crashes by a self-driving Uber car in Arizona and a Tesla car operating in semiautonomous Autopilot mode in California have put a spotlight on safety, and the California Department of Motor Vehicles on April 2 sent out a list of safety requirements that permit applicants must meet.

RELATED: Uber crash sparks talk of tighter rules for self-driving vehicles

Among them:

• Meet federal motor vehicle standards

• Show results from tests that simulate real-world driving

• Come with a two-way communications link

• Be incapable of being operated autonomously outside the territory or driving conditions stated on the application

• Hew to current industry standards to prevent cyberattacks.

Those requirements aren’t new — the DMV issued regulations Feb. 28 — but they provide a quick overview focusing on safety.

The DMV also noted April 2 that under state driverless regulations, it can immediately suspend or revoke permits over practices deemed unsafe.

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