Thatcham Research statement on legislative aims for self-driving vehicles announced by His Majesty the King
Man with high vis jacket sat in a car with his hands off the steering wheel

Thatcham Research statement on the legislative aims for self-driving vehicles announced by His Majesty the King

In alignment with the forward-looking address by His Majesty the King, Thatcham Research wholeheartedly endorses the government’s legislative agenda to introduce new frameworks to support the safe development of self-driving vehicles. As His Majesty articulated, “My Ministers will introduce new legal frameworks to support the safe commercial development of emerging industries, such as self-driving vehicles,” we, too, are committed to the vision that sees human-machine interaction as an avenue to a more secure and efficient future in transportation.

Jonathan Hewett, Thatcham Research’s chief executive, said:

“Thatcham Research recognises that the broad acceptance of self-driving vehicles hinges on the assurance of their technical efficacy and the establishment of user understanding and confidence. It is imperative that these innovative systems surpass the safety threshold of human driving abilities. We are conscious of the fact that ineffective implementation can result in advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) being underutilised; hence, we are dedicated to contributing our expertise to ensure that these technologies are both robust, reliable and provides consumer benefit."

“Insurance plays a crucial role, not as an impediment, but as an essential facilitator for the safe integration of self-driving vehicles into society. With suitable safeguards in place, the insurance industry stands ready to support this evolutionary leap, ensuring protection for both occupants and owners. We’ve invested substantially in test facilities including our connected mobility and safety assurance centre in Gamston, Nottinghamshire to have practical first-hand experience in the development of these technologies as they emerge.

“The industry’s journey is just beginning. During this phase, Thatcham Research plays an active role within the insurance sector, providing the essential risk intelligence and data understanding required to safely underwrite self-driving vehicles. We applaud the inception of a regulatory framework that embraces this future, as outlined in the Automated Vehicles Bill. It is a critical step towards realising a future where transport safety is paramount, and the societal and economic benefits of self-driving vehicles can be fully leveraged.

“Thatcham Research champions stringent standards and comprehensive legislation vital for the secure and effective deployment of self-driving vehicle technology. It is through rigorous safety frameworks, clarity in legal liability, and collaborative efforts between government, industry, and insurers that the full potential of this transformative technology will be realised. Thatcham Research is ready to work alongside all stakeholders to bring the vision of safe, efficient, and accessible self-driving vehicles to life, underpinning a future where innovation in mobility aligns with the highest standards of safety and public trust.”

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