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Friday NewsBack

Volvo plans tests of 100 driverless cars in China


Swedish carmaker Volvo has said it plans to launch a self-driving experiment in China involving up to 100 cars.

Local drivers will test cars on public roads in “everyday conditions”, according to a company press release.

The move was announced at an event in Beijing on 7 April, though details of a start date were not provided.

One analyst said he thought China was at the forefront of the development of autonomous cars.


The Financial Times

UK productivity falls by most since financial crisis

Productivity in Britain has deteriorated by the most since the financial crisis, adding to concerns about the economy’s underlying strength. The productivity of UK workers — measured by their economic output per hour — fell 1.2 per cent between the third and fourth quarters of last year. This was the steepest drop since the fourth quarter of 2008, when the UK was in recession.

RMT union calls for members to vote for Brexit

One of Britain’s most militant trade unions has urged its members to vote for Brexit even as other unions argue that leaving the EU would jeopardise workers’ rights. The RMT transport union on Thursday told its 80,000 members: “It’s a myth that the EU is in favour of workers”. The announcement clashed with publication by the TUC, the trades union umbrella body, of a legal opinion to bolster its argument that EU membership was vital to safeguard UK employees’ rights.

Pro-EU leaflets may backfire as anger spurs on Brexit campaigners

Fellow Britons, prepare yourselves for a treat. A glossy government leaflet will soon land on your doormat, stamped with the title “Why the Government believes that voting to remain in the European Union is the best decision for the UK”. Some £9.3m is being spent posting these to every household in the land, reminding you of the UK government’s pro-EU stance. Fair enough, you might say, it is the government’s official position and it has the right to advocate it. Plus, they are only leaflets — many of them will head straight for the bin.


The Times

Driverless trucks take European road trip

Self-driving lorries have crossed European national borders for the first time. Six convoys of more than a dozen HGVs equipped with autonomous driving technology arrived at Rotterdam harbour on Wednesday from as far away as Sweden and Germany. They were connected wirelessly to form “platoons”, with the lead lorry setting the route and speed. Human drivers were present as a precaution. The lorries, built by six of Europe’s largest manufacturers, had taken part in the European Truck Platooning Challenge, which was run by the Dutch government as part of its European Union presidency.

Ukip attempts to woo Scottish voters with higher drink drive limits

Ukip has launched its Scottish manifesto in an effort to woo voters with pledges to raise the drink-driving limit, reintroduce smoking in pubs and clubs, and repeal airgun legislation for people wishing to take up target shooting.

They will push the drink driving limit up to 80mg per 100ml of blood – the same level as other parts of the UK – as having a “varied limit makes no sense and 80mg is low enough to deter reckless behaviour.” They did not, however, cite any scientific evidence.


The Daily Telegraph

Chiefs at troubled Volkswagen ‘refuse to forgo bonuses’

Top executives at Volkswagen are refusing to forego their bonuses this year, despite prescribing belt-tightening for the carmaker’s workforce in the wake of the massive emissions-cheating scandal.


The Daily Mail

We need £12billion to repair all the potholes in Britain: Critics say government’s £50million pothole fund is only a ‘drop in the ocean’

A government fund to fix potholes is more than 230 times smaller than the amount needed, local councils have warned.

Yesterday the Government pledged £50million to local authorities to help them fix nearly one million potholes this year.

But councillors say the actual amount needed for repairs is £11.8billion, and the £50million promised is merely a ‘drop in the ocean’.

Posted by Lois Hardy on 08/04/2016