Google’s driverless cars will soon be spinning on the roads of Nevada! An autonomous Google car that can drive, stop and start without direct human control has got an official license from the Department of Motor Vehicles to drive it on public streets.
The high-tech unmanned vehicles will require one person behind the steering wheel and another in the front passenger seat to monitor the computer.
However, the driver can switch the car into manual mode at any time by tapping the brakes, turning the steering wheel or hitting "a giant red button.”
Bruce Breslow, director of Nevada's Department of Motor Vehicles, says, "It's a safety mechanism to make sure there's always somebody who can take control behind the wheel and there's an additional person to watch the system.”
Google self-driving car will get red plates and feature an infinity sign next to the number 001 on the left side which will help public and police distinguish it from other vehicles on the road.”
Successful test drives
Nevada’s licensing of Google's self-driving car came after successful demonstrations along freeways, state highways and neighborhoods in Carson City and the Las Vegas strip.
In the test drives, the automated vehicle was found to be safer than a car with a human driver.
The department’s Autonomous Review Committee then reviewed safety plans, employee training, system functions and accident-reporting mechanisms.
Special red license plates
Google self-driving car will get red plates and feature an infinity sign next to the number 001 on the left side which will help public and police distinguish it from other vehicles on the road.
Once, the cars become available for public, in perhaps another three to five years, the plates will be green.
Breslow stated, “I felt using the infinity symbol was the best way to represent the ‘car of the future. The unique red plate will be easily recognized by the public and law enforcement, and will be used only for licensed autonomous test vehicles.
"When there comes a time that vehicle manufacturers market autonomous vehicles to the public, that infinity symbol will appear on a green license plate.”
How the technology works?
The internet search giant has developed an autonomous car with intent to cut down traffic accidents, road congestion, free people's time, reduce carbon emissions and make driving more accessible for handicap people.
The specially designed Toyota Prius is easy to drive. It is equipped with video cameras mounted on top, preprogrammed maps, radar sensors embedded in the vehicle and GPS to avoid obstacles and assist in navigation.
"They're designed to avoid distracted driving," says Bruce Breslow. "When you're on the Strip and there's a huge truck with three scantily-clad women on the side, the car only sees a box."