Transport Minister checks in on autonomous vehicles development

Published: October 17, 2017

Updated: July 24, 2018

Author: Luke Jones

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Marc Garneau, Canada’s Transport Minister, was in California this last week and tested a Tesla autonomous vehicle. While Prime Minister was visiting Washington and Mexico City, Garneau was meeting with two senators in Silicon Valley to see how Tesla’s development of driverless cars.

With autonomous vehicles close to reaching roads in North America, and the race is on to prepare regulations in Canada for the rise of the technology. While the first vehicles will have aspects of autonomy, fully autonomous vehicles able to complete all tasks through AI, will not be available for at least a decade.

Garneau will also be visiting Detroit next month to see how the American auto industry is preparing for autonomous vehicles. His visit to California came a day before BlackBerry QNX began the first driverless vehicle test on public roads in Ottawa.

The United States is moving more rapidly towards adopting the technology. Florida and Nevada have both legalized autonomous cars for road use.

 “What I did bring up is that Canada had quite a bit to offer in terms of engineering and research,” Garneau said of his visit to Tesla.

“With our capability that is established in Canada, particularly in Ontario and in Quebec, there is the possibility that Canada could contribute if Tesla made the decision that it wanted to expand its manufacturing.”

“I think we’re zeroing in on the things that we need to do.”