Ohio Turnpike to Serve as Driverless Vehicle Testing Ground

The Ohio Turnpike and Infrastructure Commission officials — in conjunction with several other state agencies — plan to begin testing of such vehicles on the toll road across northern Ohio within the next 12 months. Turnpike Executive Director Randy Cole declined to discuss who in the automotive industry or elsewhere in the private sector will participate, saying that element is still being worked out. “That’s at the request of those involved, for competitive reasons,” he said. Mr. Cole said vehicle automation is likely to be an important technology in the future, and thus it’s important for Ohio and the Midwest to be leaders in its development. “We think the turnpike is the right opportunity for both passenger [vehicle] testing and some of the latest freight technologies as well,” he said. Such testing “can be safely done with normal traffic” on the turnpike, Mr. Cole said, and the toll road has several distinctive features lacking on other Ohio highways that will support it.