UK public to test driverless shuttle
Members of the British public are getting their first extended trial of a driverless shuttle bus.
Over the next three weeks, about 100 people will travel in a prototype shuttle on a route in Greenwich, London.
The vehicle, which travels up to 10mph (16.1kmph), will be controlled by a computer.
However, there will be a trained person on board who can stop the shuttle if required.
Oxbotica, the firm that developed the shuttle, said 5,000 members of the public had applied to take part in the study.
"Very few people have experienced an autonomous vehicle, so this is about letting people see one in person," chief executive Graeme Smith told the BBC.
"We hope to gain acceptance from members of the public for vehicles sharing this kind of space with them.
"We are also looking at how people in the vehicle respond when being transported from A to B."
The shuttle seats four people and has no steering wheel or brake pedal.
During the trial, five cameras and three lasers will help it navigate a two-mile riverside path near London's O2 Arena, an area also used by pedestrians and cyclists.
It can see up to 100m (328ft) ahead and comes to a steady stop if it detects something in its path - although it can also do an emergency brake if required.
"It's been designed to be safe and fail-safe specifically in a pedestrianised environment," Dr Smith said.
Officials behind the Gateway Project believe the shuttles could improve transport links in Greenwich.
They say paying passengers could begin using the system by 2019 on a trial basis and that it could eventually be rolled out elsewhere.
Industry Minister Nick Hurd said: "The UK has a history of innovation in the auto sector and this type of technology has the potential to save lives as well as offer freedom to the elderly or those with mobility impairments."
It is not the first time that people have been invited to travel in tests of autonomous road vehicles in Britain.
At a recent trial in Milton Keynes, Oxbotica allowed journalists to try its driverless cars and a traffic warden was granted a wish to come along for a ride.
Members of the public have also tested driverless road vehicles elsewhere in the world.
In January, Las Vegas trialled an autonomous bus that ferried passengers up and down Fremont Street in the city's historic zone amid traffic.
And in August 2016, Singaporean firm nuTonomy claimed to have become the first company to offer driverless rides to the public via its taxi app.
Its rides are only offered via a small number of cars in a 2.5-sq-mile area of the city state, and pick-ups and drop-offs are limited to specific locations.
Weather today 594
- What Next For US-Europe Trade Policy? 3945
- How to interpret the crisis between Qatar and Saudi Arabia’s allies 3219
- GOSL SHOULDN’T TOLERATE HIGH-HANDED ARROGANCE 4067
- Judge pays tribute to dead Sergeant 3109
- Minister Samarasinghe visits Oluvil 3092
- CPC tus plan massive showdown 3104
- JVP insists on referendum 3093
- Over a million affected by drought 2487
- Ravi Summoned to TB Scam Hearings ? 3108
- Sgt Premachandra Killing Tragic – Prime Minister 3106
- Eminent Economist as Govt Advisor 3114
- Who’s Today’s ‘Cocaine Kumaraya’ asks MR 3581
- Celebrating Ranil’s 40 Years in Politics 3089
- Bid to Smuggle out Sapphires worth Rs.11 Million 3093
- Judge cries for Sergeant Premachandra 3106
- Police Rule out Attempt to kill Judge Ilancheliyan 4202
- Prez Orders In-depth Probe into Nallur Shooting 3091
- Police arrest 13 university students 3085
- SAITM parents demand Govt intervention 3100
- GMOA Threatens Major Strike 3087
- Three major PC elections announced 3936
- Police behaved like hooligans 3923
- Judge Manickavasagar survives assassination 4796
- Garbage to Produce 30MW power 2618
- Plastic waste control during Esala 2555
- Do we need a new constitution? 3360
- Unveiling the utter hypocrisy 3493
- The need to rationalize free university education 2486
- The ‘Glass Ceiling’ Effect 3249
- Going away and not coming back 3177
- Heartbreak for Kariyawasam Finishes fourth with personal best 2576
- Kyle wins second Silver 2576
- Nervous Horton sets up showdown with Sun 2576
- Spieth in prime position to win British Open 2576
- Guinea go on record seven-goal spree 2576
- Ahamed steers MAS Reds to victory 2581
- BMS retain Red Bull Campus Cricket title 2580
- SLVF to conduct National Convention 2580
- De Mazenod, Cambrians win 2576
- Fears grow for Ashes as pay row drags on 2581
- Animals to lose peace and quiet at night? 4835
- Right of Reply 4714
- Addressing dengue One hour, one day and every week is enough 5207
- Acute water crisis grips Jaffna Ponies dying of thirst in Delft 4724
- NLB’s alleged monopoly continues 4755
- Prioritize FTAs with China and India – Dr. Wignaraja 3361
- Private medical education fraught with corruption – Prof. Carlo Fonseka 2442
- MULTINATIONALS HAVE SOUNDED DEATH KNELL FOR LOCAL TRISHAW INDUSTRY 4627
- McLarens Lubricants receives two Awards 2491
- NDB wins five awards 2487
- Virtusa Chairman and CEO wins Lifetime Award 2493
- Stasshani Jayawardena recognised for hospitality sector leadership 2502
- Dream teams, dream tourists and dream airports 2492
- IMF approval brings $ 98M investments to GSM 2497
- Singer’s ‘Suraksha’ helps rebuild lives post-floods 2488
- Oppo partners with Spider-Man: HomeComing 2493
- AIA plants saplings as part of ‘Go Green’ initiative 2485
- SLFPA Cricket Tournament on 29 July 2489
- A Whitewash for Failed Politics 2504
- Mattek-Sands horror injury puts Djokovic, Federer in shadow 3050
- Maidens Bowling Overs 2044
- An effective local medicine for Dengue 2016
- Kebella for High Blood Pressure Prevents fat from clogging veins 1893
- Turmeric the heavenly medicine 1892
- A Bold and Daring Fashion Entrepreneur: Niroshi Liyanage 1073
- Once Upon A Time BY Gabriel Okara 2229
- Nadi Dosha – an evil that ruins married life– Part 2 1085
- Next four months will be crucial 1088
- Rahu in the 7th obstructs marital life? 1081
- Agate gemstones keep mind and body balance 1065
- There is no success or failure in Love 1070
- Radiobeiträge Radio as Potent Tool of Education 4788
- Speaking with a Forked Tongue 4803
- Global and Local in Hong Kong cinema -Part 2 4836
- Kuchipudi dance recital and Carnatic vocal recital 4789
- Fairway National Literary Awards 2017 4715
- PASCH International Youth Camp 2017 in Embilipitiya Holistic Approach to Education 4765
- An endemic cure for snake bite 1086
- Summer holiday camp for kids 1097
- Shouldn’t they live too? 1080
- The dearth of skilled labour in the hospitality sector 1072
- The importance of grooming your pet 1070
- The new face of tea 1072