Measuring Automated Vehicle Safety: Forging a Framework

Measuring Automated Vehicle Safety: Forging a Framework

This report develops a framework for measuring safety in automated vehicles. It ranges in considerations from measuring safety in artificial development phases to deployment phases.

Key findings

"The roadway environment itself is evolving in ways that can support both effective automation and safety. Gradually, more sensors are being embedded in road surfaces and connected to traffic management systems, and there are continuing efforts to develop systems that support communications between vehicles and roadway infrastructure."

Safety considerations extend to the ownership model of vehicles. "Consumer ownership involves individuals who could vary in their abilities to maintain a vehicle’s sensing, seeing, and operating systems appropriately. For example, whereas a clean exterior might be a matter of aesthetics for a conventional vehicle, it could be essential for the proper performance (and thus, safety) of an AV that depends on cameras and other external sensors."

"AVs are particularly vulnerable to cybersecurity attacks because they are made of computer-based systems. The transition toward AVs will only increase reliance on inevitably vulnerable hardware and software, both susceptible to cybersecurity problems. The automotive industry’s relative inexperience in addressing this risk also suggests caution should be exercised. Providing multiple and layered approaches to protecting a system (redundancy in its construction and defense in depth in its construction and operation) is critical for both safety and cybersecurity. A cyberphysical attack requires many steps to succeed, and efforts to prevent the attack at every stage are probably wise. Automakers should continue to share best cyber practices."

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