Netherlands wants new EU rules for self-driving cars

Minister Melanie Schultz van Haegen of Infrastructure wants new European rules for self-driving vehicles. She would find it nice if Europe can remain ahead of the United States on this field and will push for it at an Informal Transport Council meeting in Amsterdam next week, she said in an interview with AutoWeek.

"The Vienna Convention of 1968 states that a driver must always remain in control of his vehicle, or - here you can see how old it is - his animals. We therefore have to make new agreements on this area", the Minister said.

Schultz invited her fellow Ministers of Transport to a meeting in Amsterdam on Thursday, April 14th, to discuss self-driving cars in Europe. Her goal is to make concrete agreements on the future of this new technology. "We have to see how fast we want everything and how we're going to harmonize the rules. I want all my colleges who are not thinking about this yet - and there are many - to also see the advantages of self-driving technologies."

The Minister wants to put the Netherlands on the map as a test country for self-driving technology, and for that you need European unity, she said. "It would be annoying if, every time you cross the border, you have to reset your self-driving car."

"And I think it would be nice if Europe stays ahead of the United States", she added. "I find it fun that the WEpod (self-driving bus Wageningen) can drive here in public space. And that while the self-driving Google car can not be on the road without control, because the legislation in California does not allow that."