Today, the Transport Secretary will announce that platoons of self-driving lorries will be trialed on England’s motorways to improve vehicle efficiency and reduce emissions. Advances such as lorry platooning could benefit businesses through cheaper fuel bills and other road users thanks to lower emissions and less congestion. We are investing in and trailing technology that could improve people’s lives.
What we are announcing today:
· Up to three wirelessly connected HGVs will travel in convoy, with acceleration and braking controlled by the lead vehicle.
· Lorries driving close together could see the front vehicle pushing air out of the way, making the other vehicles more efficient and lowering their emissions.
· £8.1m of government funding will be invested in the trials, which are expected to take place by the end of next year. Similar trials have already been carried out elsewhere in Europe and in the US.
· The trial will have drivers in all vehicles who are able to take control. Safety is our number one priority which is why we’re using these trials to make sure the technology is safe and works well on our roads and drivers will be ready to take control of these vehicles throughout these trials.