International Convention on Road Traffic promotes automation

Ministry of Transport and Communications
Publication date 17.3.2016 13.37
News item

The international Convention on Road Traffic has been amended to allow Automatic Driving Technologies. The aim is to promote vehicle automation and technological development.

The amendment does not affect driver responsibility. Regardless of technological systems, the vehicle must remain at all times in command of the human driver. The amendments do not impose changes on road traffic legislation in Finland.

Following the amendments, vehicles may be equipped with driving assistance systems, fulfilling the set technological requirements, that cannot be affected by the driver. The agreement also allows systems that can be overriden, such as lane departure warning and adaptive cruise control systems.

On 17 March 2016, the Government decided that Finland will implement the amendments made to the International Convention on Road Traffic. Internationally, the Convention will enter into force on 23 March 2016.

In March 2014, the Working Party on Road Traffic Safety, under the UN European Economic Commission, adopted the amendments to the Convention on Road Traffic and it became legally binding in Finland in September 2015.

The Convention (known as Vienna Convention on Road Traffic) was concluded in 1968 and Finland acceded to the agreement in 1986. The Convention on Road Traffic includes, for example, provisions on international traffic regulations.