London's Transport Bosses Want Google's Driverless Cars

By Gary Cutlack on at

In addition to the trials being launched in Greenwich, London's transport people would like to see more in the way of self-driving vehicles rolling about the city.

The news comes via deputy mayor for transport Isabel Dedring, who said that politicians within the city are in "active discussions" with Google over ways to move forward and push the odd little pods and Google's own autonomous tech further out across town.

Ms Dedring explained: "It's going to have to work in big cities so why don't we start trialling it now? Google have said they are focused on the States, but they're starting to think about going elsewhere so we're in active discussions," adding that "We met them a few weeks ago to see whether they would do trials here."

"It is still very early days but we would be keen for trials to happen in London whenever Google are ready to move them into other countries," Dedring said, clearly hoping that cute little electric cars with button noses might go some way toward helping London hit its pollution reduction targets in the future. And it would piss off the cabbies no end.

It would also make London's Crossrail-for-cars tunnel ambitions easier to pull off, as Dedring says that: "One of the interesting benefits of driverless vehicles is we can construct a much smaller tunnel because you don't have to have the same safety requirements. They're much safer as the computer controls the distance at which driverless cars drive, and their speed. The likelihood of accidents goes down very substantially and therefore the size of the tunnel becomes substantially smaller." [PA via The Register]

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