Whilst an environment where all vehicles are fully autonomous is currently envisaged as the end goal, technological advances are expected to be delivered incrementally creating a spectrum of autonomy.

The strategic road network in the United Kingdom has seen initial levels of autonomy introduced over previous years but a variety of considerations are required to establish how network operators react from the present situation through the next phases, eventually leading to full autonomy (transitional phase).

This paper identifies and reviews the operational safety considerations that are applicable to this transitional phase and considers how challenges can be mitigated and managed. Recommended next steps for network operators on how to react to these significant future variations are provided.

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