Dubai’s RTA plans dedicated lanes to test driverless buses

Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) plans to test driverless buses on dedicated lanes in the near future, a senior government official has said.

The state-owned entity conducted the test run of driverless cars in Downtown Dubai last year, and is expecting to introduce autonomous flying vehicles, provided it is certified “safe and secure” by July.

“In the first phase, the [public] buses will be autonomous, but with a driver sitting which is similar to what you see with companies such as Google. The driver is not the car but sitting there for precaution,” Ahmad Hashem Behroozian, chief executive officer, RTA’s Licensing Agency, told Arabian Business.

“But as the technology evolves, you can expect a bus without a driver and without steering in the future. Remember, the shuttle bus in Downtown Dubai had no steering and no driver. We just had somebody standing in there to make people comfortable, but it was not necessary.”

The official revealed that the autonomous buses will not be really merging with traffic in the first two years and will have their own dedicated lanes with sensors and cameras controlling the direction of the bus and it being able to stop during emergency situations.

He did not given any timeframe on when these driverless buses will be put into service.


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