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Your self-driving Google car will know when the police are approaching

Your self-driving car may be able to do a lot more than just chauffeur you around — if Google’s new patent is any indication, it may save you from traffic tickets, too. Or at least, it may recognize when a police car is approaching.

As per a new patent discovered by the PatentYogi team, Google looks to be in the process of making a police vehicle detection system for its autonomous vehicles. After all, a car that’s smart enough to get you from Point A to Point B without any help from its human driver should also be smart enough to avoid those flashing lights.

Of course, Google’s cars are already pretty good at following traffic rules and regulations, so regardless, they shouldn’t be attracting much attention from the boys in blue. After all, the self-driving vehicle only caused its first crash back in February, and have otherwise been model artificial citizens on the road. But all the same, there are a number of other traffic rules we know that cars will need to follow. For example, an autonomous vehicle will need to learn how to immediately stop itself on the side of the road if approached by a police car, or get out of the way should an emergency vehicle appear to be on its way to addressing an emergency.

As such, the Google patent shows a detection system that automatically detects approaching government vehicles based on their unique pattern of flashing lights. The self-driving cars will be taught to recognize the distinct blue and red lights that police cars emit, and respond appropriately. For example, if a police car is approaching a self-driving car, the latter should yield to the former by pulling over or simply getting out of the way.

So get excited, friends. Not only are you a law-abiding citizen, your self-driving car soon will be as well.

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Lulu Chang
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Fascinated by the effects of technology on human interaction, Lulu believes that if her parents can use your new app…
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