Reynolds, Orr Discuss DOT’s Connected-Car Proposal with Law360

December 19, 2016

O’Melveny counsel Michael Reynolds and associate Jason Orr were quoted in a December 19, 2016 Law360 article about a proposal from the US Department of Transportation that would require all new cars to communicate with each other to improve roadway safety. As Reynolds and Orr point out in the article, “4 Questions Raised by DOT’s Connected-Car Tech Proposal,” the proposal presents significant spectrum-sharing issues.

“The FCC has hinted at wanting spectrum, the real estate that the V2V uses, opened up to unlicensed users for wireless interests, whereas automakers have wanted to keep the spectrum for the DSRC application,” Reynolds said. “Some of the fear is that if you start sharing the spectrum, there might be interference issues. It remains to be seen whether the FCC will want to open [that] up.”

Orr added, “I wouldn’t describe it as a stepping stone [to fully automated vehicles] because you can have other applications besides automation on using V2V. But at the same time, this should be interpreted as another push from the agency to foster the development of automated vehicle technology.”

Reynolds, who is based in LA and has a background in technology and engineering, and Orr, also based in LA, are thought leaders in the emerging field of autonomous vehicles and have authored a number of articles on the legal issues surrounding the subject.