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DMV Approves Autonomous Delivery Vehicles For Testing

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — The California DMV approved the testing and commercial-use of autonomous vehicles on California's public roads.

The DMV can begin approving new applications in 30 days. This comes after the Office of Administrative Law approved that companies with a DMV permit can begin testing autonomous delivery vehicles. The light-duty passenger cars, midsize pickup trucks, and cargo vans must weigh less than 10,000 pounds.

In the past, the DMV didn't allow autonomous delivery vehicles to be tested on city streets. But now if companies get the right permits, you could soon be getting your pizza and packages delivered by a driver-less vehicle.

Ian Sherr editor-at-large for CNET says it's never been a question of when but of how.

"There's been plenty of talk about autonomous vehicles, and we've been moving down this road. The biggest question how that testing would take place," Sherr said.

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Sacramento Mayor Darrel Steinberg has long believed this is the future. Steinberg was quoted last year saying, "It's our future and were going to grab it."

Depending on the permit, companies can test the delivery service with or without a safety driver, leaving some people to say, "not so fast."

This wasn't something Angel Chavez wanted to hear as he waited in a parking lot in West Sacramento.

"With all the accidents they've been having with those vehicles, I don't think it's a good thing," Chavez said.

In March of 2018, both an Uber and Tesla self-driving car were involved in deadly collisions. Sherr believes whether you like it or not, we will have to learn to share the road with technology and it will be safe.

"I don't want to share the road with an autonomous vehicle that can run me over or hurt my children. That's not going to happen here," said Sherr.

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