EasyMile's EZ10 electric driverless shuttle bus to begin trial in Ipswich, England

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EasyMile's EZ10 electric driverless shuttle bus will begin a trial in Ipswich, England starting on Monday, Feb. 26.

Ipswich City Council is trialing one of the driverless shuttles around its Orion water theme park lagoon near the Orion Shopping Centre on John Nugent Drive at Springfield. The trial is open to anyone who would like to ride the shuttle during the public demonstration times.

“The loop along John Nugent Way takes about five minutes, so it’s a great way to get a taste for what the future of public transport might be like,” says EasyMile spokesman Simon Pearce via the Brisbane Times.

Ipswich's mayor Andrew Antoniolli says, “the demonstration of this driverless technology is a long-term transport prospect and one we are certainly investigating.”

Capable of carrying 12 people, the steering wheel-less shuttle bus uses sensors on each corner to “read” the roadway, objects in front, back or beside the vehicle. When fully charged, the vehicle can operate for 14 hours on its lithium-ion battery.

This isn’t the first time that Ipswich City Council has expressed an interest in autonomous vehicle technology. Last September, Ipswich City Council and the state government announced plans to recruit 500 motorists for a trial where their cars are fitted with technology that allows them to adjust to information from road signs, or new road safety warnings, or queues.

“For example, a pedestrian crossing at a signalized intersection, a red light runner or a queue ahead,” explained Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey in September 2017.

“These rapidly developing co-operative and automated vehicle technologies could significantly reduce crashes and congestion and also reduce vehicle emissions and fuel use.”