The US Department of Transportation (DoT) has established a Non-Traditional and Emerging Transportation Technology (NETT) Council as an internal deliberative body to help identify and resolve issues restricting quick deployment of new technologies such as autonomous vehicles.

US Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao made this announcement at the South by Southwest (SXSW) conference in Austin, Texas.

Chao said: “New technologies increasingly straddle more than one mode of transportation, so I’ve signed an order creating a new internal department council to better coordinate the review of innovation that have multi-modal applications.”

“I’ve signed an order creating a new internal department council to better coordinate the review of innovation that have multi-modal applications.”

USDoT currently comprises 11 operating administrations and each has their own traditional jurisdiction over some environmental and regulatory approvals.

As new technologies may not necessarily fit always into the department’s existing regulatory structure, this can lead to a slower pace of transportation innovation.

To obtain safety authorisations, permits, and funding, inventors and investors typically approach the USDoT and can face uncertainty on how to coordinate with the department.

The NETT Council is expected to tackle these challenges by ensuring that the conventional modal silos at the DoT do not impede the deployment of new technology. Sorry, there are no polls available at the moment.

In addition, the council will give project sponsors a single point of access to discuss plans and proposals.