The UK Code of Practice, published in July 2015, sets out that developers can carry out trials of automated vehicle technology if they are conducted in line with UK law. This includes having: 1) a safety driver (in or out of the vehicle) who is ready, able, and willing to resume control of the vehicle; 2) a roadworthy vehicle; and 3) appropriate insurance. The Code makes it clear that it is for developers to assure themselves that they are complying with the law and conducting trials safely.
The Government plans to update the Code of Practice in Summer 2018, to provide guidance to support true self-driving tests. We are working to develop an application process, with assessments being made on a case by case basis.