The city of Trikala is going to be the first of five areas in Europe where experimental driverless buses will be tested out, as part of the European CityMobil2 program.
The six automated, sensor-navigating buses will hit the streets of Trikala in early 2015, have a capacity of 4, 12 and 15 passengers and a top speed of about 20 km/h. As soon as the Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport updates the relevant legislation the buses will be put to use next year.
The CityMobil2 in a European initiative that focuses on promoting the necessary legislative reforms that will allow the future operation of automated vehicles on European roads. Some of the legal qualms were discussed at the EU-wide Transport Minister meeting in Athens that took place on Monday.
The Deputy Minister of Transport Michalis Papadopoulos reported that automated bus services will help alleviate traffic from city centers, in conjunction with other reforms and noted that the technology is “mature enough” to excel in technical tests.
Mr. Papadopoulos further noted that after the preliminary testing period concludes, the government’s intention is to introduce such an automated, driverless bus service in the historic center of Athens.