California approved autonomous taxi tests

The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) has approved two new programs,

which allow vehicle operators to run autonomous taxis.

CPUC has been working on new rules for severalyears old. The two new programs will allow companies to offer passenger services, ride-sharing, and accept cash reimbursement for autonomous vehicle rides. At the same time, California announced its intention to ban the sale of new vehicles with internal combustion engines starting in 2035.

Companies interested in participating inprograms must obtain a carrier's approval for the Drivered AV Passenger Service pilot program issued by the CPUC. Separately, they need to obtain a test permit from the state Department of Motor Vehicles.

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California has strict regulations forcompanies that are engaged in autonomous transport. They oblige firms to obtain licenses for various types of testing, to disclose information on road accidents, to list the number of miles traveled and the frequency with which drivers responsible for human safety were forced to take control of autonomous vehicles.

Now in California, about 60 companies havevalid authorization for testing autonomous vehicles. Five companies - Cruise, Waymo, Nuro, Zoox and AutoX - have an additional permit that allows them to test self-driving cars on public roads.

There are only a few paid services in the USautonomous taxi. Waymo, a division of Alphabet, is testing Waymo One in Arizona, and they provide about 1–2,000 rides a week. Three other companies, Lyft, Aptiv and Motional, have completed about 100,000 trips to Las Vegas in the past few years.

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