Uber Halts Self-driving Car After Arizona Crash, What Happens Next?

By Jeff Thompson - 27 Mar '17 05:30AM

Uber halted the self-driving car project as one of its car ended up in an accident on Friday in Tempe, AZ. It was one of the 40+ cars that the company was testing its auto-pilot feature in Arizona, San Francisco, and Pittsburg. Though there are no serious injuries reported, the firm decided to stop the testing for a while.

The transporting company indicated that it would look for the causes of the accident and then would continue with the testing. "We are looking into the incident," a spokesperson for the firm said. It is reported that the driver of a second vehicle failed to control his car, and it rammed into the Uber car and made the autonomous vehicle flip. There are also reports that the police confirmed that the mistake was not with the Uber car. The auto-pilot car was a Volvo SUV as the firm was in a deal of $300 million partnership to ensure smooth testing.

Though the Uber cars didn't make any major accidents in the past, other self-driving cars created quite a buzz in the past. In 2016, a car driver who was using auto-pilot feature in one of the Tesla Model S in Williston, Florida, hit with a truck, and the driver lost his life. Similarly, Alphabet Inc.'s self-drive car also faced an accident last year in Mountain View, California. It was hitting a bus while trying to move from an obstacle. The back-to-back accidents have created a panicked situation for the people as well, and there are minor protests and concerns about the safety of the program itself.

It is another setback for the riding firm as it faced a lawsuit from Alphabet's Waymo regarding its auto-pilot feature. Waymo filed a suit that the technology of Uber is actually stolen from the former, and the test-ride should be stopped immediately. It claimed that its former employee and current Uber auto-pilot head, Anthony Levandowski stole some 14,000-page documents before resigning from the Google's auto-car division. However, Uber replied that the complaint was "baseless," and it was an attempt of Waymo to stop its auto-pilot advancement.

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