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Driver-less Cars to Be Tested in Manhattan




With the advancement in technology, moving from one place to another is becoming easier. First came Uber, an app that allows people to get a ride anytime, anywhere, and are assured of their safety. There now are self-driving cars that have been developed. The governor of New York Andrew M. Cuomo said that General Motors through its affiliate company known as Cruise Automobile has indicated an interest to test their new self-driven car early 2018 at Manhattan. Mapping of the test site is already underway. The full application will be made to the department of motor vehicles which will, in turn, give the necessary permissions. The testing supervision will be delegated to the state police.

The governor’s announcement attracted mixed reactions from different quarters. Officials from the de Blasio administration, for instance, expressed their discontentment with the statement, claiming that not much notice was given nor were they actively involved. Eric Phillips, the spokesperson of Mayor Bill de Blasio, said that they expect to be given much more details way before the vehicles start the test. He went ahead to say that they have serious safety concerns. The governor’s announcement reveals that the self-driven cars will have two passengers, one is an engineer behind the wheel and the other a regular person on the passenger’s seat. The tests are legal in New York. The self-driven car helps in reducing the cases of accidents and at the same time saves time. Mr. Cuomo is of the sentiments that the development of autonomous vehicles is a new and growing industry that New York should be leading at.

This may not be the first time that a driverless car is going to be spotted in New York. Several vehicles have been spotted caring well-known people like Gov. Kathy Hochul. Other states like California have expressed their intention to allow cars to drive without any human supervision by 2018. Currently, some driverless cars are allowed in California but must have a person supervising them at the driver’s seat. There, however, seem to be little demand for driverless vehicles especially after an accident happened in Florida last year, involving a self-driving car. It is still unclear whether the technology had anything to do with the accident. An organization known as Region Plan Association conducted a study that indicated that if New York fails to embrace the technology, it risks being left behind. The research also reveals that if the technology is not well put into place, it may end up causing trouble.

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