05/11/2020 - 15:42

Driven to disruption

05/11/2020 - 15:42


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Each year, the cars we drive are becoming increasingly automated.

Driven to disruption
The RAC Intellibus® has travelled more than 25,000kms on public roads. Pictured: The RAC Intellibus® visiting Geraldton.

Many modern vehicles are fitted with early-stage automation, such as Adaptive Cruise Control and Autonomous Emergency Braking — systems designed to assist the driver and reduce the likelihood and severity of a crash. These life-saving systems are a window into the future of transport. A future with fewer crashes, quicker commutes and happier communities.

The development and adoption of driverless technology is rapidly accelerating and over years to come will power the biggest mobility transformation we’ve experienced in a century — disrupting the way we travel, live and work.

Automated vehicles have the potential to alleviate congestion, cut harmful vehicle emissions, reduce the cost of transport, improve mobility, and transform the very structure of our cities and urban designs.

Most importantly they will address the unacceptably high rate of deaths and serious injuries on our roads, many caused by ordinary people making everyday mistakes.

RAC has been exploring the future of transport through our RAC Intellibus® trial since 2016, when the driverless shuttle first took to the streets of South Perth. Since then, more than 17,000 passengers have been onboard and experienced driverless technology first-hand, including at regional demonstrations in Busselton and Geraldton.

The RAC Intellibus® has travelled more than 25,000kms on public roads, teaching us much about the technology – how it works, how people feel about it and how we can prepare for it.

Having a robust understanding of the technology is helping develop a roadmap for Western Australia’s transition to driverless technology – ensuring we are well positioned to realise the benefits.

Such profound technology does not come without its challenges. Privacy and data security will be paramount.  So too ensuring the different forms of mobility — including traditional cars, driverless vehicles, public transport, cycling and walking — can share our roads safely and seamlessly.

There is an enormous level of change coming to the way we move around. Accompanying it will be an unparalleled opportunity to reimagine what’s possible for our transport system.



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