Vehicle Platooning for Safety and Efficiency Act

Summary

SNPS 2017 Amendments HERE

  This legislation enables vehicle platooning operations. Vehicle platooning systems enhance efficiency by enabling aerodynamic drafting. While platooning, a lead vehicle is followed by one or more other vehicles at a close distance by relying on connected automated braking systems and other safety technologies, which together comprise a vehicle platooning system. This legislation will update state laws to account for this technology and will unleash innovation in the freight trucking sector, thus allowing trucking fleets to improve vehicle safety and efficiency.   The legislation is relevant to legislators in 22 states (AL, AR, CA, DE, FL, IN, IA, KY, LA, ME, MI, MN, MS, MO, NJ, NM, NV, OK, TN, UT, WV, WI), whose vehicle codes include a numerical following distance rule applied generally to all vehicles or specifically to categories of vehicles such as commercial vehicles, vehicles drawing other vehicles, or motorcades/caravans.  These rules prohibit vehicle following within a defined distance or time, and constrain the market adoption of safe and efficient vehicle platooning.

Vehicle Platooning for Safety and Efficiency Act

Section 1.  (Legislative Declarations)

Subdivision 1.  A vehicle platooning system electronically coordinates the speed between a lead vehicle and one or more follow vehicles, enabling them to travel safely in a unified manner at a close following distance.  A vehicle platooning system relies on a connected automated braking system, which allows a following vehicle to synchronize braking with a lead vehicle through direct vehicle-to-vehicle communication.

Subdivision 2.  A vehicle platooning system can improve the safety of public roads by using best-in-class automated braking systems, sensors, and software, which can operate at all times to help avoid crashes.

Subdivision 3.  A vehicle platooning system can improve the economic competitiveness of trucking fleets by enhancing vehicle fuel efficiency.  Freight trucks transport the critical goods that Americans sell, purchase, and rely on every day, and fuel often represents the largest single trucking fleet operating cost.  Platooning systems can lower that cost by reducing aerodynamic drag for both lead and following vehicles when they travel safely at close following distances, thereby improving fuel efficiency.

Section 2.  (Definitions)

Subdivision 1.  Connected Automated Braking System.  Connected Automated Braking System means a system by which the braking of a lead vehicle is electronically coordinated with the braking of one or more following vehicles through vehicle-to-vehicle communication.

Section 3.  (Exemption)

[Insert all state following distance code sections] shall not apply to the operator of a following vehicle using a Connected Automated Braking System.