The West Country is leading the way in driverless car technology

Driverless car trials have been taking place at the University of the West of England, aimed at older adults. Credit: ITV West Country

The West Country could be at the forefront of driverless car technology, targeting the vehicles at older people in the region.

Scientists at Bristol Robotics Laboratory at the University of the West of England want to test them on older adults because they could be the largest market.

The cars are in development all over the world, but scientists in Bristol are leading the way in testing them on this particular group. One aim is to see if these high-tech pods can make roads safer and reduce traffic.

Trials are currently taking place at UWE's Frenchay Campus in Bristol, with 30 older adults enjoying test journeys in the two-seater pods.

Older people are the target market for these Bristol-based trials, with a further trial taking place in a retirement village in 2019. Credit: ITV West Country

Researchers aim to learn from the participants, measuring how they interact with the vehicle and noting things they say could be done differently.

In April 2017 the Chancellor announced that £100million would be spent on developing the technology to mass-produce driverless cars.

A share of this funding was given to multiple Bristol-based organisations who are working on these vehicles and carrying out vital research.

It's hoped that driverless cars can one day reduce traffic and make roads safer. Credit: ITV West Country

A further trial will be taking place in 2019 at a retirement village also in Bristol.