May 9, 2012- Nevada is known for its liberal policies, casinos and legalized prostitution. The state will now be known for something else – autonomous vehicles. The state is the nation’s first state to issue driverless vehicles licenses for public roads. It is also the nation’s first state that has welcomed the vehicles officially, although existing laws in some states have not explicitly prohibited the vehicles.
Even though Nevada seems to be the state that is most zealous about embracing the driverless cars, there are many restrictions that will keep one or possibly two drivers at all times in the vehicle. Just a few months ago, the state became the country’s first to pass regulation for autonomous vehicle operation. The regulation explains the need to have two people in the vehicle; one to take manual control if necessary and one to monitor the plotted course on the computer system.
The Department of Motor Vehicles for the state will issue special licenses plates for the vehicles that are driverless. The first of the fully autonomous cars to hit the road will be the Toyota Prius. Officials from the DMV have been chauffeured on the vehicle to get an idea of its capabilities.
A number of companies besides Google have applied to have autonomous vehicle licenses. The DMV in Nevada said other companies continue research and development with their autonomous technology.