Self-driving cars will soon be on the streets of New York

If you want to test out your self-driving car in the US, you need a special permit from the authorities in California, Nevada or Arizona. Well, you can now add New York to that list, as the state has announced its intention to start accepting applications from companies looking to run trials of autonomous vehicles.

"With this action, we are taking a careful yet balanced approach to incorporating autonomous vehicles on our roads to reduce dangerous driving habits, decrease the number of accidents and save lives on New York roadways," NY Governor Andrew Cuomo said, TechCrunch reports.

Particularly in New York City itself, the roads should pose a whole new challenge to cars used to tootling around the vast expanses of some of the other states. As usual, a human driver will have to be present at all times while the cars are being tested.

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Applicants are bound to give New York regulators reports on how the tests have been going, with permits expiring in April 2018 (though they can then be extended). As yet we don't know who'll take New York state up on its offer, but it's likely that Google, Tesla, Uber, Apple and others will be interested.

"We need to make sure these vehicles are safely tested on our roads, while providing opportunities for the public to become familiar with this technology," said the DMV's Terri Egan, adding that "self-driving cars will one day likely be commonplace".

If you live in New York or plan to take a trip there soon, keep your eyes open for autonomous vehicles patrolling the streets - you might even get a ride in one. Meanwhile, California's self-driving car regulations are currently under review.

David Nield
Freelance Contributor

Dave is a freelance tech journalist who has been writing about gadgets, apps and the web for more than two decades. Based out of Stockport, England, on TechRadar you'll find him covering news, features and reviews, particularly for phones, tablets and wearables. Working to ensure our breaking news coverage is the best in the business over weekends, David also has bylines at Gizmodo, T3, PopSci and a few other places besides, as well as being many years editing the likes of PC Explorer and The Hardware Handbook.