Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety issue Tenets to guide federal legislation

Dec 07, 2020
Connected Car Security

The Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety just released the Autonomous Vehicle (AV) Tenets. The Tenets aimed to serve as a guide for federal legislation and policy on the development and deployment of AVs.

The document has four categories- prioritizing the safety of all road users, guaranteeing accessibility for all, preserving consumer and worker rights, and ensuring local control and sustainable transportation. Supported by a collation of over 50 groups, the AV Tenets’ goal is to improve commonsense safeguards and regulations, to help AV technology reach its full potential and benefit the public.

The Tenets are based on expert analysis, public opinion, and real-world experience. In January 2020, the Advocates also conducted a survey, finding that almost 70% of the respondents said they would feel more comfortable about AVs if they knew manufacturers had to reach a minimum performance standard before selling the AVs to the public.

Lifesaving technologies are evolving and entering the marketplace right now. However, instead of advancing proven safety technology, “a fervor has been whipped up about AVs”, according to Cathy Chase, President of Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety.

Chase said that unsupported claims added fuel to the fire, including statements that the US is behind other countries in AV development and that tens of thousands of exemptions to existing safety requirements are needed to be competitive.

“We urge the US Department of Transportation and Congress to use these AV Tenets as their ‘GPS’ to ‘guarantee public safety’ for the continuing development and future deployment of AVs,” Chase added.

Sam Loesche, Legislative Representative, International Brotherhood of Teamsters, added that the Tenets symbolize the realization that workers, safety advocates, consumer champions, and everyone committed to transportation equity all have the same core values. Such values should be addressed by any autonomous vehicle legislation.

“These technologies stand to impact such a wide range of stakeholders that any legislative package which ignores the priorities of one group or key demographic should not be considered as adequate. Such proposals should be scrapped and taken back to the drawing board,” Loesche explained.

Autonomous vehicle safety has been a growing concern for the public. In November 2020, non-profit organization Consumer Watchdog released the list of top hackable cars for the year, showcasing security concerns in the most popular connected car models. In the same month, engineers from the Southwest Research Institute exposed vulnerabilities in the charging process of an electric vehicle.

Determining the safety issues and vulnerabilities of connected cars is one of many vital steps in making these vehicles more secured, especially as the connected car market is set to grow in the coming years.

To learn more about TrendMicro’s contribution to finding related connected car threats, read our research and insights:


Author: Ericka Pingol

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