A bunch of driverless Cruise robotaxis blocked visitors in San Francisco for hours on Tuesday night after the automobiles stopped working with out clarification.
Particulars of the incident have been shared on Reddit (and noticed by TechCrunch) and illustrate how driverless autos are nonetheless experiencing teething issues in real-life settings.
Cruise, which is backed by Common Motors and Honda, has been testing its know-how in San Francisco since February, however solely launched a industrial robotaxi service final week. The automobiles don’t have any human security driver in any respect however function beneath sure restrictions. They solely provide lifts on “choose streets” between the hours of 10PM and 6AM when the climate situations are favorable, and may drive no sooner than 30mph.
Photos of the driverless roadblock present at the least 5 autos stopped on the street. The redditor who shared the photographs stated the incident befell round midnight.
“The very first thing I say to my coworker is that they’re getting collectively to homicide us,” stated redditor seansinha in a remark. “It was a fairly surreal occasion. People needed to come and manually take the automobiles away. Cruise ought to get fined to shit for blocking the road off for therefore lengthy. They even made it so the road sweeper couldn’t hit a complete block.”
Seansinha stated Cruise staff confirmed as much as the incident “in twenty minutes” however that it took them a very long time to truly transfer the automobiles. “It was an enormous debacle,” he stated.
A spokesperson for Cruise acknowledged the incident in an announcement given to TechCrunch, however provided no particulars on why it occurred, and if the issue may happen once more sooner or later.
“We had a problem earlier this week that brought on a few of our autos to cluster collectively,” stated the spokesperson. “Whereas it was resolved and no passengers have been impacted, we apologize to anybody who was inconvenienced.”
It’s not the primary mishap involving Cruise’s driverless tech. Earlier this 12 months, a police officer tried to pull over a Cruise robotaxi, apparently as a result of the automobile’s headlights have been turned off at night time. Cruise later stated the incident was resulting from “human error.” “Our AV yielded to the police automobile, then pulled over to the closest protected location for the visitors cease, as supposed,” stated the corporate. “An officer contacted Cruise personnel and no quotation was issued.”