Goal 3: Improve access for individuals with disabilities to passenger & commercial vehicles

Human Machine Interface

Autonomous vehicles must be designed with fully accessible human machine interface (HMI). This means that the tools and functions one uses to interact with the AV are accessible for persons with disabilities. For example, if a car has a screen with instructions, the screen must both provide large print for persons who have low vision as well as have a text to speech capability for those who are totally blind. Such HMI should go a step further and have the capability to interact with a braille display for persons who are both deaf and blind. Other functions such as bright flashing lights or vibrating haptics are examples of practices that can allow for accessible HMI. As the advent of AV becomes more commonplace, a set standard of HMI will enable usage to be easier and safer. When users know what to expect, they can more easily interact with the vehicle.

It is likely that such technology will interact with smartphones. Thus, it is imperative that such phone apps are compliant with Section 508 and WCAG 2.0 standards to make sure blind and visually impaired users are not prevented from using the service.

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Idea No. 447