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News & Features

Plans to Legalise Self-parking Cars

Posted in General News on Thursday, January 4th, 2018

The government advocates the widespread introduction of remote control parking because it could be beneficial for a number of people including those with reduced mobility, people with narrow garages and those who are forced to park their vehicle in a very tight space. The Department for Transport (DfT) claims that the average driver will spend 106 days looking for a parking space throughout their lifetime and it is believed that self-parking vehicles could be a solution to this problem. However, many of the  cars which have a self-parking function are connected to the drivers mobile phone and the owners of these vehicles have to use their mobile phone to park their car remotely. This means that the act of using your mobile phone to activate the self-parking function while you are inside the vehicle would currently be illegal because drivers are only allowed to use their mobile phone while they are inside the car if they need to call the emergency services. With this in mind, the DfT has recently launched a consultation which states that drivers should be allowed to look at hand-held devices when they are inside their vehicle if they are using them to activate remote parking. The DfT has also proposed that a new law should be added to the Highway Code stating that "You can park your vehicle via remote control, using a legally compliant parking application or device in an appropriate way which does not endanger others."

The DfT consultation goes on to outline the possibility of allowing drivers to use ‘advanced driver assistance’ systems on motorways. These systems not only take control of how fast the vehicle is travelling they also maintain the vehicles position on the road. The Transport Minister, Jesse Norman, commented: “The government is determined that Britain should lead the way in embracing the safe deployment of new vehicle technology. Features such as remote-control parking and motorway assist have the potential to transform car travel, adding greater convenience and accessibility to drivers, so that they can park and drive with more confidence."

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