Pa. transportation secretary, senator unveil bill to allow self-driving cars to be tested without someone behind the wheel

Forty years ago, Pennsylvania became a leader in self-driving vehicles when it deployed one to help clean up the nuclear accident at Three Mile Island in Harrisburg.

Now, Carnegie Mellon University President Farnam Jahanian said Wednesday, it’s important to change state law to allow continued development of self-driving cars and trucks in Pennsylvania.

Mr. Jahanian spoke in strong support Wednesday of bi-partisan legislation that will allow companies to test self-driving vehicles on Pennsylvania roads without a driver available to take over in an emergency. State Transportation Secretary Yassmin Gramian and state Sen. Wayne Langerholc, R-Johnstown and chairman of the Senate Transportation Committee, unveiled the proposed legislation at a news conference at Mill 19 at Hazelwood Green.

The bill, Senate Bill 965, was introduced Wednesday with nine co-sponsors, including two Democrats.