Dubai’s RTA launches supervised autonomous testing on the city’s roads

Posted: 13 October 2023 | | No comments yet

Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority has commenced supervised autonomous vehicle testing, prioritising safety and marking a significant step toward a futuristic transportation system.

RTA Dubai's RTA launches supervised autonomous testing on the city's roads

Credit: Dubai's Roads and Transport Authority

The Dubai Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) has announced that it has initiated supervised testing of autonomous vehicles in the Jumeirah 1 area, marking a significant milestone in the city’s ambition to advance the implementation of autonomous mobility. The initiative, a result of a collaborative effort between RTA and Cruise, a self-driving technology company, is set to revolutionise the way people travel in this city.

The project had commenced with the deployment of Chevrolet Bolt-based autonomous vehicles. During this testing phase, a safety driver will be present to ensure the utmost safety while assessing the performance and readiness of the autonomous vehicles. This development comes after extensive data collection and successful testing on closed tracks, validating the technology’s reliability.

This initiative is a crucial step forward in achieving RTA’s strategic objectives, including becoming the first in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) to successfully implement autonomous transportation. Furthermore, it aligns with the city’s goal of becoming the world’s smartest city. These efforts are rooted in the commitment to enhance the well-being and safety of Dubai’s residents, tourists and visitors.

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The self-driving technology company will use the Dubai testing grounds to validate the safety and performance of its autonomous vehicles while evaluating their compatibility with Dubai’s digital and physical infrastructure, especially in the Jumeirah 1 area. The testing will also focus on assessing the technology’s performance during critical traffic situations.

This endeavour has earned RTA a significant achievement, as it issues its first permit for autonomous vehicle trials in Dubai. Cruise, with whom RTA has a partnership agreement, will officially operate autonomous vehicles in the city, offering taxi and e-hailing services in the near future.

Dubai’s ambitious vision, inspired by H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates, and Ruler of Dubai, aims to convert 25% of all trips in the city to autonomous travel by 2030.