Are Australian roads ready for Autonomous vehicles?

The automotive industry is gearing up for the arrival of autonomous vehicles that could revolutionise the way we get around.

But as manufacturers get closer to achieve self-driving technology, is society prepared for the arrival?

Austroads has recently conducted a series of audits to determine the readiness of roads in Australia and New Zealand for automated driving, looking at stretches of road, line segments and signs to determine how automated vehicles would fair.

25,000km of road was sampled as part of the audits, approximately 2 percent of all roads in Australia, with 8 million-line segments and 8,000 signs studied.

From the findings, Austroads Program Manager of Future Vehicles and Technology, John Wall said all signs point to roads being equipped to support autonomous vehicles.

“We found that most freeways and highways of Australia and New Zealand can support Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) such as lane-keeping assistance, particularly when there are high quality lines,” said Mr Wall.

Austroads also addressed the lack of asset standards among main road agencies.

With a lack of direction and guidance, as well as high costs, road agencies have rejected the development of asset standards according to the reports.

As a result, Austroads have provided recommended guidelines to assist agencies in developing standards.

The reports also determined that due to the large number of rural roads in the country, many roads lack edge lines, which assist autonomous vehicles with lane keeping. Recommendations to improve the contrast between edge lines and adjacent pavements, as well as introduce edge lines to more roads have been included in the reports.

Original source: Create digital | Upgrades needed to pave the way for autonomous vehicles

29 Nov 2019