Robo-Cars to Be Test-Driven On UK Roads By End of 2013

Driverless cars will soon be cruising streets around the U.K., the country's Department for Transport (DOT) has confirmed.

In a report released on Tuesday, the DOT said that by the end of this year, "semi-autonomous" cars will be tested on U.K. streets. The initiative is part of a broader strategy on the agency's part to reduce pollution and congestion on the country's roads.

Driverless vehicles have become something of a star in the technology industry after Google showed off the technology it developed that allows for traveling without human interaction. Since then, several automakers, including Nissan and Toyota, have started investing in driverless technology, realizing that it's probably a big part of the future of car travel.

Not surprisingly, the UK's DOT believes the same, but cautioned in its report on traffic that it doesn't believe fully autonomous cars will hit the road in force for a good 25 or more years.

The self-driving car the U.K. will allow on the streets are those that can be easily taken over by a human. The cars use lasers and cameras to properly control the car, but at any time, they can be overridden by the person inside. Fully autonomous cars, on the other hand, would essentially drive themselves without the need for any human input.