NSW Government opens expressions of interest for driverless car trial.

The car does the driving.
The car does the driving.

Regional communities will get the chance to be the first town in NSW to trial a driverless car.

Roads Minister Melinda Pavey opened expressions of interest for a regional trial while visiting Wagga Wagga on Friday.

Mrs Pavey said the NSW Government is currently trialling the state’s first fully-automated vehicle at Newington Armory, through the collaboration between the Smart Innovation Centre and industry partners.

“We want to test this technology outside the Greater Sydney area so our regional communities can be part of our future planning when it comes to driverless vehicles,” Mrs Pavey said.

“Country people account for only one third of NSW’s population but tragically two thirds of all fatalities in NSW occur in country areas.

“Currently, 94 per cent of road accidents result from human error.

“Automated vehicles remove the human element of driving, which will help bring the road toll down Towards Zero.

“There’s still some way to go before automated vehicles become common place on our roads.

“But as a government, we’re exploring smarter systems and technology-driven solutions,” Mrs Pavey said.

Wagga Wagga MP Daryl Maguire said it is important to make sure regional communities have the opportunity to experience and realise the benefits automated vehicles will bring beyond the city limits. “Today, we drive our cars but the reality is, in the future our cars will drive us - we’re not there yet, but we need prepare for this change,” he said.

More details on the trial at https://www.transport.nsw.gov.au/projects/programs/smart-innovation-centre.