Doug Ford allows self-driving cars in Ontario

Doug Ford, recently elected Ontario premier, has decided to cut down on some red tape when it comes to self driving cars in Canadian province of Ontario.

Of course, it will not be free for all , and drivers would need to follow the following exemptions:

  1. Regular folks like you and me can use self-driving cars but only if they are designed to be Level 3 – Conditional Automation: The vehicle becomes a co-pilot. The vehicle manages most safety-critical driving functions but the driver must be ready to take control of the vehicle at all times. The problem is none of the cars on the market in Canada are Level 3 so we might need to wait a bit for them to come here.
  2. When it comes to approved auto manufacturers, tech companies, universities, research institutions and systems manufacturers – they can operate Level 5 – Full Automation: Vehicle is capable of being completely driverless. Full-time automated driving in all conditions without need for a human driver. The government will need to sign off on each car that they own before they can start driving it around or more accurately being driven around in one. Also as a driver inside the car even though you are not driving you will still be responsible for the car’s operations and be charged for any offense: distracted, careless and impaired driving laws.

“At the University of Waterloo we are conducting unique research in the field of autonomous vehicles, like improving self-driving in Canadian weather conditions such as sleet and snow. After recently celebrating 100 kilometres driven on public roads, the measures announced today will allow projects like Autonomoose to further advance important research opportunities in this emerging sector, while training highly qualified personnel for industry.”

Ross McKenzie
Managing Director, WatCAR, University of Waterloo