DENVER (CBS4)– Get ready to share the road with cars that drive themselves. Gov. John Hickenlooper is expected to sign a bill that paves the way for the new technology in Colorado, after state lawmakers gave it the green light.
“All this bill says is, as this technology develops, we’re going to treat these cars just like any other car,” said Rep. Owen Hill, a Republican representing El Paso County.
Hill sponsored the bill that would allow self-driving cars to be tested in Colorado as long as they abide by the rules of the road, or receive special permission from State Patrol and CDOT.
The legislation also bars local governments from setting different standards.
“Some communities – and I won’t mention any names – but their initials are ‘Boulder’,” laughed Hill, “are trying to say they need to be all electric vehicles, or they can’t be privately owned. And we just want to make sure that we treat all these cars exactly the same.”
Hill calls driverless cars a “game changer”.
“There’s a commercial for a car that can parallel park itself. Think about how much anxiety that takes away from folks like my grandmother,” Hill said. “You look at 93% of accidents, are caused by human error.”
Within in the next five years, industry experts project automakers will roll out millions of driverless cars. Hill hopes a testing ground in Colorado will attract manufacturing jobs.
“It’s amazing how quickly this is evolving. And because it moves so quickly, we want to make sure that state regulation doesn’t get in the way and prevent these things before they have the chance to actually improve people’s lives.”
California, Florida, Nevada, and Michigan currently allow the testing of driverless cars.