The Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) in Dubai has enacted new legislation to streamline trial runs of autonomous vehicles in the city.

All autonomous vehicle manufacturers are required to abide by the stipulations while conducting trials of their vehicles.

The rules define the responsibilities of government entities such as RTA, Dubai Police and Dubai Corporation for Ambulance Services in the facilitation of the trials.

It also calls on firms, public entities or individuals planning to test autonomous vehicles in Dubai to enter into contracts with RTA. The contract will detail the rights and duties of both parties.

RTA Smart and Sustainable Transport Committee chairperson and Public Transport Agency CEO Ahmed Hashim Bahrozyan said: “Rules enacted aim to achieve the strategic targets of Dubai Smart Mobility Strategy calling for transforming 25% of mobility trips in Dubai into self-driving transport means by 2030.

“The underlying objective of the strategy is to reduce the cost of transport, carbon emissions, and accidents, besides saving hundreds of million hours wasted in driving conventional vehicles.”

Under the new legislation, RTA will provide infrastructure and logistics to conduct the trials runs in collaboration with the concerned entities and ensure compliance among the concerned parties.

The transport authority will also certify the vehicles that pass the test runs.

In addition, RTA is entitled to suspend trials, cancel permits or serve notices to concerned parties, if they violate any stipulated obligation.

Bahrozyan added: “The legislation stipulates that the autonomous vehicle to be tested must be covered by a comprehensive insurance policy against accidents and civil responsibility.

“The policy must be valid throughout the testing period. It orders manufactures and other parties concerned with the trial run to comply with the conditions and processes stated by RTA in this regard.”