It has been widely reported that Ron Medford, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's (NHTSA) deputy director, will leave the government agency to join Google Inc in January, where he will become the director of safety for Google's self-driving cars.
has a career of more than 40 years in government service and has been a key player in finalizing the 2017-2025 Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) requirements to a fleetwide average of 54.5 mpg in 2025.
has been involved in all of the key safety issues NHTSA has investigated in recent years and has also been implemental in setting new safety rules.
Medford's appointment has been seen as an indicator of how seriously Google is moving ahead with its driverless or autonomous cars program.
In an email sent to staff at the NHTSA
said the move was "bittersweet.
wrote, "While I am excited to embark on this new adventure, I am deeply saddened to leave this agency and the many incredible staff who have committed your lives to making people safer on our roadways.
I am at a loss for words to describe the emotion and gratitude I feel for the people I have come to know and admire at NHTSA
" Medford originally joined the NHTSA in 2003 and was named acting deputy administrator in January
Prior to joining the agency, he was the assistant executive director for hazard identification and reduction at the US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), where he was responsible for the regulatory and technical work of the agency.