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March 28, 2018 11:45 AM, EDT

FMCSA Seeking Public Comment on Rules for Automated Commercial Vehicles

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is seeking public comment through May 10 on regulations that may need to be updated, modified or eliminated to “facilitate the safe introduction of automated driving systems for commercial motor vehicles.”

“To assist in this undertaking, FMCSA commissioned the U.S. Department of Transportation’s John A. Volpe National Transportation Systems Center to conduct a preliminary review of Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations to identify regulations that may relate to the development and safe introduction of automated driving systems,” the agency said in a March 26 Federal Register announcement.

EDITORIAL: FMCSA's listening, will you talk?

The agency requests comments on the Volpe report, including whether any of FMCSA’s current safety regulations may hinder the testing and safe integration of automated CMVs. A copy of the March 2018 summary report has been posted in the federal docket.

Review of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations for Automated Commercial Vehicles Preliminary Assess... by Transport Topics on Scribd

“Further, FMCSA requests comment on certain specific regulatory requirements that are likely to be affected by an increased integration of ADS-equipped CMVs,” FMCSA said.

The agency said it is not seeking comment on its financial responsibility requirements because they are not directly related to CMV technologies and because future insurance requirements will depend in part on the evolution of state tort law with respect to liability for the operation of the vehicles.

FMCSA also is requesting information from companies engaged in the design, development, testing and integration of ADS-equipped CMVs into the fleet, including the “scenarios and environments” where entities expect that the systems will soon be tested and operated on public roads or in interstate commerce.

The announcement said the agency is seeking comment on a variety of regulatory areas ranging from the inspection, repair and maintenance of automated CMV to hours of service requirements for driver-assisted CMVs.