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Amidst growing public safety concerns, a major transit agency is evolving its use of surveillance technology to introduce new cameras in different places…

A poll conducted to determine why riders haven’t returned to the service revealed public safety and cleanliness concerns. More than half of 1,000 survey respondents had witnessed or been a victim of a crime on BART. Meanwhile, 85 percent of BART riders who have reduced or eliminated their usage said they would ride the system more often if it was significantly cleaner and safer…

But according to annual public reports published in compliance with BART’s Surveillance Technology Ordinance, riders also complain regularly about a lack of CCTV coverage.

Since FY 2020, the agency has received 81 complaints about its CCTV system due to a lack of surveillance coverage for train-related incidents, or parking lot vandalism and theft. No complaints were filed about privacy concerns in the same period.

General Motors (GM.N) is to scale back spending on its self-driving unit Cruise after a pedestrian accident last month, Financial Times reported on Tuesday.

GM and Cruise did not immediately respond to Reuters’ request for a comment.

In October, one of Cruise’s driverless cabs was not able to stop in time from hitting a pedestrian who had been struck by a hit-and-run driver, raising safety concerns around the use of robotaxis.

Cruise in November paused all supervised and manual car trips in the United States while also expanding a safety review of its robotaxis, causing tumult within the company and compelling CEO Kyle Vogt and Chief Product Officer Daniel Kan to step down.

GM’s robotaxi unit last week said it was planning to re-launch in one unspecified city before expanding to others and would focus on its Bolt-based Cruise autonomous vehicles in the near term.

The dream of your car automatically reporting potholes to authorities who can speedily fix them could be close at hand.

The Ohio Department of Transportation is sponsoring a project, led by Honda Motor Co. and University of Cincinnati researchers, to study whether artificial intelligence can make that very dream a reality – and even save lives.

The goal of the two-year project is to test the viability of using anonymized data mass collected from camera-equipped cars and AI algorithms to pinpoint road hazards in real time on the 50,000 lane miles and 45,000 bridges under ODOT management.

Testing of a new automated shuttle is underway at the University of Michigan’s Mcity Test Facility to ensure the technology is ready to safely serve older adults and people with disabilities in the city of Detroit.

Earlier this month, U-M researchers kicked off several months of testing with an automated vehicle provided by May Mobility, a leader in the development and deployment of AV technology.

The vehicle under test is identical to those destined for Detroit. The evaluation is taking place at the Mcity Test Facility—the world’s first purpose-built environment for testing connected and automated vehicles and technologies under controlled, realistic conditions. The shuttle will undergo a two-part test developed by Mcity, called the Mcity Safety Assessment Program.

The protocol includes:

A “Driver’s License Test” that serves a purpose similar to a human driver’s test, measuring basic competency in ordinary scenarios.
A “Driving Intelligence Test” that challenges AV software with a diverse set of dangerous driving scenarios—representing those that most often result in crashes, injuries and fatalities.

On any given day, thousands of people walk past a traffic light next to the Gonda Neuroscience and Genetics Research Center. But some mornings, that traffic light is surrounded by a web of wires, computers and people.

This intersection isn’t just any intersection – it’s the UCLA Smart Intersection – and the people there are members of the UCLA Mobility Lab.

The lab works with UCLA Transportation to reduce traffic and increase safety throughout Westwood, said Jiaqi Ma, the lab’s director and an associate professor of civil and environmental engineering. Zhaoliang Zheng, a doctoral student in the lab, said the team uses both virtual simulations and hardware to analyze the flow of vehicles and pedestrians – making the lab one of the first in the field to combine virtual and physical data in this way.

Zheng said one of the challenges of the lab’s work is a lack of precedent when it comes to real-life experiments on road traffic.

n 2020, StateTech named Syracuse, N.Y., as a top Smart City to Watch. On Nov. 28, Syracuse Director of Strategic Initiatives Jennifer Tifft will participate in Smart Cities Connect 2023 on a panel, The National Standards Strategy for Critical and Emerging Technology and Implications for Smart Cities and Communities. The conference, hosted by the Gaylord National Hotel and Convention Center in National Harbor, Md., explores issues regarding the design and adoption of networks supporting the Internet of Things and related technologies…

What has Syracuse been doing within its smart city space since we last chatted a few years ago?
TIFFT: We are playing a much more proactive role in certain areas than we envisioned in 2020. I grouped our focus these past few years in three key buckets.

The first is around continuing to grow operational capabilities related to the Internet of Things and other advanced technologies that are directly used by departments. So, we are thinking about municipal operations and municipal infrastructure. The focus is creating additional capability that leverages these emerging technologies.

Better transparency and tighter rules could improve public trust in self-driving cars amid safety concerns involving Cruise robotaxis, experts tell Axios.

Why it matters: The big promise of autonomous vehicles (AVs) is that they could make transportation safer and more accessible for everyone.

But robotaxis are being tested and deployed in cities without residents’ explicit consent, and without much oversight.
So when problems occur, as in the case of Cruise, public acceptance becomes that much harder.
Catch up quick: General Motors-owned Cruise pulled its entire U.S. fleet of 950 driverless cars off the road after a San Francisco pedestrian was struck by a human-driven vehicle and then run over by a nearby Cruise robotaxi…

Meanwhile, the entire AV industry is grappling with the challenge of winning public acceptance.

Both Cruise and Waymo have published studies claiming to show that their driverless vehicles are safer than human drivers.
But safety experts say their research is flawed because it relies on limited or skewed data.

The electric vehicle story seems to have changed lately from an expectation of rapid adoption and frantic production to a reality of cooling interest and pullbacks in investments.

General Motors (GM) – Get Free Report pushed back its EV targets and postponed its coming EV lineup in what it called an effort to ensure profitability; Ford (F) – Get Free Report postponed $12 billion in EV investments; Hertz is slowing the electrification of its fleets, in part citing weak resale value; and Tesla (TSLA) – Get Free Report remains engaged in a price war meant to entice skeptical buyers…

Part of the gap in the adoption curve additionally involves differences between early adopters and the masses.

Jeremy Michalek, Carnegie Mellon professor of engineering and public policy, told TheStreet in August that the early adopters tend to have garages, meaning they can charge their EVs overnight and at home. For the second, larger wave of adopters who don’t have access to overnight charging, better charging infrastructure, more robust batteries and longer vehicle range are key concerns.

-The Northeast Corridor Commission — a coalition of Amtrak, commuter transit agencies, states and the U.S. Department of Transportation — announced Nov. 16 an ambitious 15-year plan to rebuild the Boston-New York City-Washington, D.C., rail line.
-The plan is an update to one set out in 2021 that outlined repair needs, service goals and the necessary infrastructure to achieve those, and is estimated to cost $176 billion in inflation-adjusted, year-of-expenditure dollars.
-“The Northeast Corridor is vital to hundreds of thousands of Americans and the American economy, and investing in it is a priority of the Biden-Harris Administration,” said Amit Bose, administrator of the Federal Railroad Administration and co-chair of the NEC Commission, in a statement.

TxDOT is partnering with a company to launch a program designed to improve self-driving trucks on Texas roadways.

The technology will focus on a 21-mile stretch of State Highway 130 from Georgetown to Del Valle.
By next year, special poles will be set up. It’s part of a project TxDOT and startup Cavnue are working on called the “smart freight corridor.”

“This infrastructure include cameras, radar, other communication, hardware, as well as machine learning, as this is where we can use AI to our benefit. This digital infrastructure will eventually accommodate with self-driving freight vehicles and can benefit all users of the roadway,” said TxDOT spokesperson Brad Wheelis.

Cavnue will set up the technology along a 21-mile stretch of the road in Central Texas. It will have a focus on trucks.

Safety advocates have spent years pushing for new technologies to address a sharp rise in deaths from truck crashes — up 48% in a decade.

Now, after fatalities rose for the eighth straight year, federal transportation officials are moving ahead with new rules designed to make trucks less deadly…

…two federal regulatory agencies are looking at whether to require new trucks to have automatic emergency braking (AEB) systems. The agencies, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, also are considering requiring devices that limit how fast trucks can go. Both regulations already are in place in many other countries…

But the 150,000-member Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association has come out against the new rules, expressing concerns about how foolproof the technology is. And the group has found a receptive audience on Capitol Hill. House Republican legislation funding the U.S. Transportation Department through Sept. 30, 2024, would ban the agency from moving ahead with either proposed regulation.

Tesla faces a ban on selling its full self-driving technology in Britain under new driverless car laws, in a setback to Elon Musk’s plans for millions of robot-driven vehicles.

The Department for Transport will prevent carmakers from describing vehicles as “self-driving” or “driverless” unless their systems are approved under changes coming as soon as next year…

Tesla has for years charged motorists around the world thousands of pounds for an optional “full self-driving” upgrade, but has only activated a test version of the technology in North America.

Despite its name, the feature requires constant monitoring from drivers and is described as an “assistance” system, meaning that it would be unlikely to meet the high bar for government approval under its upcoming Automated Vehicles Bill.

Last week, government notes on how it plans to enforce the bill said the terms “self-drive”, “self-driving”, “drive itself”, “driverless” and “automated vehicle” would be regulated under efforts to prevent the “misleading marketing” of the technology.

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