News Stories

NHTSA Stops Babcock Ranch From Using Self-driving School Bus

5:58 PM, Oct 23, 2018


Rebecca Fath

Remember those self-driving school buses Babcock Ranch was going to put into use?

Well the government has stopped them.

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration told the company that developed the driver-less shuttle, Transdev North America, to stop transporting school children.

This shuttle bus has not been a secret and it's been in the works for years - so we’re wondering: why now?

Back in September, we went to Babcock Ranch to take a look at the shuttle while it was being tested. Now the NHTSA is saying that Transdev never got permission to use it as a school shuttle. So, NHTSA sent a cease and desist letter to Transdev.

Why? The NHTSA says Transdev never told the government it was testing the bus.

The news release from NHTSA said it, “… granted Transdev permission to temporarily import the driver-less shuttle for testing and demonstration purposes. Transdev requested permission to use the shuttle for testing and demonstration purposes, not as a school bus."

We tried to get in contact with Transdev to get their side of the story but we haven't received a response.

So we reached out to the NHTSA but they said to send our questions in an email. The NHTSA later responded, but they pointed us back to the information we already knew.

We haven't heard from Babcock Ranch either which leaves us with the question of how the kids are getting to school.


Schooling in SWFL