First driverless bus in Victoria takes to the roads

The first driverless shuttle bus in Victoria, Australia has begun operations, transporting students around La Trobe University’s Bundoora campus as part of an automated vehicle technology trial.

“Automated vehicles will revolutionise the way we travel”

The ‘Autonobus’ trial will run until July 2018, supported by the Victorian government’s Smarter Journeys Program. Others involved in the driverless testing include roads operator VicRoads, La Trobe University, Keolis Downer, HMI Technologies, ARRB and the RACV.

The driverless shuttle will operate along the university’s Science Drive, carrying passengers from nearby transport interchanges and car parks and allowing them to hop off close to their destination.

While Autonobus is designed as an automated, driverless shuttle, it will be supervised at all times by an operator who can take over if required.

“Automated vehicles will revolutionise the way we travel,” said Victorian Minister for Roads and Road Safety Luke Donnellan. “That’s why we’re investing in trials that explore ways technology can be used to reduce congestion and keep people safe on our roads.”

Stuart Ballingall, Director of Transport Futures at VicRoads, said: “The learnings from this project will assist VicRoads in understanding how automated vehicles will interact with other road users, and will inform our regulatory and operational frameworks to support their safe operation.”