Showing posts from August, 2021

Defining Safe Level 2 & Level 3 Vehicles

SAE J3016 defines vehicle automation levels, but is not a safety standard (nor does it claim to be). Levels 2 & 3 are especially problematic from a safety point of view. What they define if the standard is followed -- and no more -- is unlikely to provide acceptable safety in practice. To be clear: a vehicle said to be SAE Level 2 or SAE Level 3 might be safe. But if it only does the bare minimum required for J3016 conformance, it is unlikely to be safe. More is needed. (For more on the specifics of SAE J3016 Levels see this user guide (link)  including a detailed discussion of what is and is not required by the SAE Levels.) SAE Level 2 safety SAE Level 2 requires that the driver be responsible for the Object and Event Detection and Response (OEDR). The driving automation might or might not see some objects, and might or might not respond properly, thus requiring continuous driver vigilance. However, it is well known that human drivers do poorly at supervising automation. Paradoxi

SAE J3016 User Guide

The SAE J3016:2021 standard ( ) defines terminology for automated vehicles including the famous SAE Automation Levels. It is widely referenced in discussions, other standards, and even government regulations. Unfortunately, what is said about J3016 is too often inaccurate, misleading, or just plain incorrect. Misinterpreting the SAE Levels can lead to misunderstandings about what the standard actually says, the technology incorporated into a car, and a driver's expectations. It's important to get statements in standards and regulations right. Moreover, it's important when referring to J3016 to understand that it says what it says, not what some author might want it to say, what might seem optimal for safety, or what other documents state that it says. (While this might seem obvious, perpetuation of misunderstandings is rampant.) You can read the full user guide that explains the standard, its implications and debunks myths