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Uber, Google and Ford form self-driving car coalition

A host of automotive companies are joining forces to urge government action on self-driving car tech.

Google Self-Driving Car
Google's self-driving car: Now featuring working lights!

A fleet of auto and tech companies are forming a self-driving car coalition.

Google, Uber, Ford and others are ganging together to promote the interests of self-driving cars, according to a Reuters report. The coalition's aim is to urge government action on self-driving vehicles, specifically to cut through the patchwork autonomous-driving laws that differ wildly from state to state.

"The best path for this innovation is to have one clear set of federal standards," ex-US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration official David Strickland said in a statement. "The coalition will work with policymakers to find the right solutions that will facilitate the deployment of self-driving vehicles."

Driverless cars are being developed by numerous companies. Proponents say self-driving tech has the potential to be much safer than standard human driving, though policymakers are likely to have many concerns about the implications of letting a machine take the wheel.

"1.3 million people die every year in traffic accidents -- many of them young people," an Uber spokesperson said in a statement. "Self-driving cars can help save millions of lives as well as cut congestion in our cities."

Ford echoed and expanded on that sentiment. "We believe fully autonomous vehicles will help people travel more safely and efficiently, as well as facilitate mobility for those currently unable to drive," the automaker said in a statement.

Earlier this year, Google acknowledged that one of its self-driving cars was at least partly responsible for a minor accident involving a bus.

Google and Ford didn't immediately respond to requests for comment.

Update 14:42 p.m. UK: Added statement from Uber.

Update 17:11 p.m. UK: Added statement from Ford.