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Self-Driving Cars Would Need a Driver in California

  • DMV says having a licensed driver on board is safer, for now
  • Google says the rules inhibit use by the elderly or disabled
Updated on

Google Inc. envisions a world where a blind man can get in his car alone and tell it to take him to the grocery store. California regulators say self-driving automobiles aren’t smart enough yet to zip around town without a driver ready to take the wheel.

The state’s Department of Motor Vehicles is finalizing regulations for the everyday use of autonomous cars with the goal of releasing them in the next year. They would require a licensed driver -- and a steering wheel -- just in case something goes wrong. Google says the rules limit the technology’s potential.