Personal Delivery Devices (PDD): New Transportation Frontiers Emerge for Autonomous Vehicle Rulemakers

With regulatory frameworks around autonomous vehicles (AVs) under development at the federal, state, and local levels, new autonomous technology frontiers are emerging for rulemakers. The latest is personal delivery devices (PDDs) – essentially small autonomous vehicles designed primarily for last-mile logistics using sidewalks and driveways, rather than public roads and highways.

Regulation of PDDs is truly nascent. Today, a limited number of states have, or are soon to have, PDD-specific statutes or regulations, including Arizona, Florida, Idaho, Ohio, Utah, Virginia, and Wisconsin. Each of these statutes has a few common features: Requirements related to size, speed, and weight limits, and active control and monitoring by an operator. Similar frameworks are also being developed at the city level, including in Washington, D.C. and Walnut Creek, CA.

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