Cruise’s autonomous driving tech comes under scrutiny from safety regulators

Cruise’s autonomous driving tech comes under scrutiny from safety regulators

U.S. safety regulators opened an investigation into the robotaxis operated by Cruise, GM’s self-driving subsidiary.

According to the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration, it was The investigation was opened After learning of incidents in which these robotaxis “may not have engaged in improperly hard braking, or became immobilized while operating upon public roads,” the preliminary investigation includes all Cruise AVs.

Reuters was the First to report The formal safety probe.

Cruises Obtained the appropriate permits California regulators approve the company’s ability to charge driverless rides in certain San Francisco areas. The company is still waiting for approval from the California Public Utilities Commission in order to expand its service area throughout San Francisco.

Cruise has increased its driverless operations and the public has been paying attention. Although many videos and posts are focused on the excitement of riding in a driverless vehicle, not all documentation from the public has been positive. Many images and videos have been shared on social media, Reddit, and other forums that document Cruise robotaxis stuck at intersections and blocking traffic in San Francisco.

NHTSA was not informed of the hard-braking crashes via social media. Cruise reported the events to the agency. Standing General OrderThis requires manufacturers to report certain accidents involving automated driving systems or advanced driver assistance systems at SAE Level 2 or higher. This is the third investigation NHTSA has opened on an automated driving system developer. The first two were for recall query According to the agency, this includes an audit query and an investigation. Multiple investigations have been conducted. Tesla’s advanced driver assistance technology.

NHTSA reported that three hard-braking collisions were reported by Cruise through the Standing General Order. Two of the crashes resulted in injuries. Cruise stated that all three incidents involved injuries. Cruise also said that the vehicle was supervised. This means there was a trained safety operator behind it. According to Cruise, none of these incidents resulted into police citations.

Cruise also stated that it had already met with NHTSA in order to discuss the events listed in their filing and provided briefings and all the information requested by the agency. According to the agency, the investigation was initiated to assess the potential safety-related risks posed by these types of incidents and determine the extent and severity of the problem.

“Cruise has a safety record that is publicly reported, including having driven nearly 700,000.00 fully autonomous miles in an extremely complicated urban environment with no life-threatening injuries or deaths,” Cruise spokesperson Hannah Lindow stated in an emailed statement sent to TechCrunch. “This is against the backdrop that over 40,000 Americans die each year on American roads. There is always a balance between healthy regulatory scrutiny, innovation, and life-saving measures. That’s why we will continue to work with NHTSA and any other regulator to achieve that shared goal.

Lindlow pointed out that the robotaxi was responding to aggressive or erratic road users in each instance and was working to reduce the severity of collisions and the risk of injury.

The NHTSA did not provide any further information about the cases of cruise vehicles that were immobilized. Cruise said that Cruise’s technology was conservatively designed. If the technology isn’t certain how to proceed, the vehicle will activate hazard lights and stop. The company stated that Cruise personnel can be dispatched to physically retrieve the vehicle if necessary. However, this is uncommon and has not led to any collisions.

According to the company, the robotaxi could become immobilized if a door is left open, if the vehicle’s hardware or software is defective, or if there is an unusual external event like a spontaneous fireworks display on the street. A spokesperson stated that the company communicates with both the CPUC (the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles), the agency responsible for regulating autonomous vehicles, about how, why, and when it does so.

Continue reading