NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Mayor Bill de Blasio said Thursday that he is fighting head on against Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s decision to begin testing self-driving cars in New York City.
As WCBS 880’s Peter Haskell reported, it is the latest chapter in what seems like an ongoing feud between Cuomo and de Blasio.
Cuomo announced Tuesday that General Motors and Cruise Automation will begin a self-driving car test in Lower Manhattan next year.
“Autonomous vehicles have the potential to save time and save lives, and we are proud to be working with GM and Cruise on the future of this exciting new technology,” Cuomo said in a news release issued Tuesday. “The spirit of innovation is what defines New York, and we are positioned on the forefront of this emerging industry that has the potential to be the next great technological advance that moves our economy and moves us forward.”
But Mayor de Blasio said no one told the city about any of it.
“This announcement was done without any knowledge of the City of New York, and that’s unacceptable,” he said.
The mayor believes the self-driving cars could be dangerous to pedestrians and to other drivers. He said there is some “real great potential” with self-driving technology, but also some “really big challengesand unanswered questions.”
“From my point of view, this should never have been done without consulting with the NYPD and Department of Transportation,” de Blasio said. “We’re going to work vigorously to stop it.”
The state Department of Motor Vehicles says the matter is strictly up to the state. The cars will have a licensed driver behind the wheel as a safety backup.