USDOT Releases Automated Vehicles Comprehensive Plan
January 14, 2021

The US Department of Transportation released the Automated Vehicles Comprehensive Plan (AVCP), which outlines the department’s robust multimodal strategy to promote collaboration and transparency, modernize the regulatory environment, and prepare the transportation system for the safe integration of Automated Driving Systems (ADS). The AVCP prioritizes safety while preparing for the future of transportation.

“This comprehensive plan lays out a vision for the safe integration of automated vehicles into America’s transportation system while ensuring that legitimate concerns about safety, security, and privacy are addressed,” said Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao.

The AVCP illustrates how the Department’s work, including myriad efforts with our stakeholders beyond government, is focused on meeting the challenges of a transportation system that must adapt to technological advancements. The AVCP provides real-world examples of how the Department’s operating administrations collaborate to address the needs of emerging technology applications.

Tthe plan defines 3 goals to achieve the US vision for Automated Driving Systems (ADS):

■ Promote Collaboration and Transparency – USDOT will promote access to clear and reliable information to its partners and stakeholders, including the public, regarding the capabilities and limitations of ADS.

■ Modernize the Regulatory Environment – USDOT will modernize regulations to remove unintended and unnecessary barriers to innovative vehicle designs, features, and operational models, and will develop safety focused frameworks and tools to assess the safe performance of ADS technologies.

■ Prepare the Transportation System – USDOT will conduct, in partnership with stakeholders, the foundational research and demonstration activities needed to safely evaluate and integrate ADS, while working to improve the safety, efficiency, and accessibility of the transportation system.

The AVCP builds on the US Government’s core principles related to automated vehicles, outlined in Ensuring American Leadership in Automated Vehicle Technologies: Automated Vehicles 4.0 (AV 4.0). It also complements the Department’s earlier statements A Vision for Safety: Automated Driving Systems 2.0 (ADS 2.0) and Preparing for the Future of Transportation: Automated Vehicles 3.0 (AV 3.0).

Development of the AVCP was informed by extensive stakeholder engagement conducted over the last several years through events (in-person and virtual) and public notices.