The House of Lords Science and Technology Committee is to hear from the Department for Transport and the Department for Business, Energy and industry Strategy on how the government sees the development of autonomous vehicles fitting into its wider transport strategy and policy.

Specifically, the Committee said it would ask;

  • What benefits and drawbacks do you expect from the deployment of highly automated or autonomous vehicles in all sectors in the UK?
  • How will the government ensure that the possible increased convenience of autonomous vehicles does not lead to an increase in journeys by car at the expense of active modes such as walking and cycling?
  • Is there a case for extending the role of the Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles to include other government departments to ensure knowledge gained in one sector is shared for the benefit of all?

The two ministers who will be attending the session will be John Hayes, MP and minister of state, Department for Transport, and Nick Hurd, MP and minister of state for Climate Change and Industry, Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.

As well as the ministers, the committee plans to ask a number of academics how information might be obtained on drivers’ attitudes to using and buying automated vehicles or sharing the streets with them, and how much is known and understood about the behaviour and interaction of people with the technology used for autonomous vehicles.

The Lords will questions the MPs and academics on 22 November.