California DMV holds initial public hearing on driverless cars

In the summer of 2012, the California state government approved a bill that allowed driverless cars on the roadways in California. This opened the door for firms like Google working in the autonomous car industry to begin testing cars on public streets. Before the cars could come to the public, a myriad of rules needed to be created and enforced.

This process began this week when the California DMV held a public hearing in Sacramento to talk about how driverless vehicles would be regulated. This is particularly challenging since autonomous vehicles aren't fully developed or available. Questions the state is trying to answer are many.

One of the major questions is how the state will now the driverless cars are safe and if a driver needs to be behind the wheel of the car at all. Other things that the state is trying to work out include if the owner of the car gets points taken from their license of the driverless car gets into an accident.

The law that passed in 2012 gave the DMV until the end of 2014 to determine how to integrate autonomous vehicles onto public streets. One of the big issues that has to be tackled is privacy. Some fear that the autonomous cars might become another way to track our daily lives. A Google rep present at the meeting said that manufacturers should be able to self-certify that a vehicle is safe.