National Highway Traffic Safety Administration March 30, 2020 – Federal Register Recent Federal Regulation Documents

Occupant Protection for Automated Driving Systems
Document Number: 2020-05886
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2020-03-30
Agency: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Department of Transportation
This proposal is one of a series of regulatory actions that NHTSA is considering to address the near- and long-term challenges of testing and verifying compliance with the Federal motor vehicle safety standards (FMVSS) for vehicles equipped with Automated Driving Systems (ADS) that lack the traditional manual controls necessary for human drivers, but that are otherwise traditional vehicles with typical seating configurations. This document seeks to clarify the ambiguities in applying current crashworthiness standards to ADS-equipped vehicles without traditional manual controls, while maintaining the regulatory text's application to more traditional vehicles and vehicles equipped with ADS that may have alternate modes. This proposal is limited to the crashworthiness standards and provides a unified set of proposed regulatory text applicable to vehicles with and without ADS functionality. This NPRM builds on NHTSA's efforts to identify and address regulatory barriers to vehicles with unique designs that are equipped with ADS technologies, including the advance notice of proposed rulemaking on removing barriers in the crash avoidance (100 Series) FMVSS in May 2019, the request for comments on this topic in January 2018, and the research that NHTSA is currently conducting. NHTSA also intends to issue a separate notice regarding removal of barriers in the FMVSS that pertain to telltales, indicators, alerts, and warnings in ADS-equipped vehicles.