Thursday, June 13, 2024

California DMV is investigating a Cruise robotaxi’s collision with a fire truck

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Cruise will quickly be deploying fewer autonomous autos in San Francisco whereas investigators are trying into “current regarding incidents” involving its fleet. Based on The New York Times and TechCrunch, the California Division of Motor Autos requested the corporate to chop its fleet in half after an incident whereby one in every of Cruise’s robotaxis collided with a fireplace truck at an intersection. The hearth truck had its sirens and crimson lights on and was responding to an emergency on the time, whereas the robotaxi has passengers onboard who sustained non-life-threatening accidents. In one other, maybe much less controversial, incident just a few days earlier than that, a Cruise car got stuck in wet concrete

The DMV stated in an announcement that its major focus is “the protected operation of autonomous autos and security of the general public who share the highway with these autos.” It additionally added that it “reserves the correct, following investigation of the info, to droop or revoke testing and/or deployment permits” if it determines that an organization’s autos is a menace to public security. The company has requested Cruise to restrict its driverless autos in operation to 50 throughout daytime and 150 at evening, no less than till the investigation is completed. 

In an explanation concerning the collision posted on the corporate’s web site, Cruise’s Basic Supervisor for San Francisco, Greg Dietrerich, stated the robotaxi recognized the emergency car as quickly because it got here into view. It was additionally in a position to distinguish the hearth truck’s sirens “as quickly because it was distinguishable from the background noise.” Nonetheless, it wasn’t attainable to see autos coming from across the nook “till they’re bodily very near the intersection” the place the incident occurred. Additional, the autonomous car had bother predicting the hearth truck’s path, as a result of it moved into the “oncoming lane of site visitors” to bypass a crimson mild. Dietrerich stated Cruise’s AV recognized the chance of a collision and hit the brake to scale back its velocity, nevertheless it wasn’t in a position to keep away from the crash utterly as a consequence of these situations. 

The DMV’s request comes just some days after the California Public Utilities Fee (CPUC) voted in favor of permitting each Cruise and Waymo to cost fares for totally driverless rides any time of the day in San Francisco. Earlier than that, Cruise may solely supply fared rides with no security driver onboard in restricted areas of town between 10PM and 6AM. The one commissioner who voted towards the businesses’ paid trip enlargement argued that the CPUC did not have sufficient info to precisely consider the affect of autonomous autos on first responders.

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