It’s premature to regulate the self-driving vehicles being tested by companies such as General Motors Co. and Waymo, the U.S. government’s top auto safety official said.
“At this point the technology is so nascent I don’t think it is appropriate today to regulate this technology,” Heidi King, deputy administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, said in an interview. “It’s not there yet, but each and every day we are open to identifying when the time is right.”
King’s comment reaffirms the agency’s commitment to a hands-off approach to rules for autonomous vehicles that safety advocates have criticized for being too lax.
The Uber Technologies Inc. self-driving crossover that struck and killed a pedestrian in March fueled fresh calls for oversight, and Senate Democrats have slowed legislation in the chamber that would ease the path for companies to put more self-driving vehicles on the road.