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Dutch government plans to allow large-scale self-driving car tests, wants to try trucks too

AMSTERDAM - The Dutch government says it wants to encourage large-scale tests of self-driving cars in the Netherlands by next year, and supports a plan to allow tests of self-driving trucks by 2019.

The country's infrastructure minister, Melanie Schultz van Haegen, said Monday she is investigating legal changes needed to allow self-driving cars to use public roads in the Netherlands, and plans to submit a law by early 2015. This fall she will indicate likely conditions and roads earmarked for testing.

In addition, the Port of Rotterdam, DAF trucks and the Netherlands' Organisation for Applied Scientific Research have applied to test a system to transport goods caravan-style on public roads using self-driving trucks.

Spokeswoman Marianne Wuite said the government believes self-driving cars will lead to greater efficiency and safety, and reduce pollution.

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