Self-driving Ubers sidelined after deadly crash


Uber is halting self-driving car tests in San Francisco Monday after a fatal crash in Tempe, Arizona overnight, the company confirmed.

The crash happened on Mill Avenue south of Curry Road, according to Tempe police.

The car was in autonomous mode with a person behind the wheel when the collision happened, Tempe police said. A woman was walking outside of a crosswalk on the road from west to east when the car hit her.

Police said she was taken to a hospital where she died from her injuries. Her name has not been released yet.

There were no passengers in the backseat of the Uber at the time of the crash, according to the company.

Uber is assisting in the investigation, police said. Along with San Francisco, the company has also halted tests in Phoenix, Pittsburgh and Toronto, a company spokesman said.

An Uber spokesman said:

“Our hearts go out to the victim’s family. We are fully cooperating with local authorities in their investigation of this incident.”

Uber briefly halted self-driving car tests in San Francisco in December 2016 after the California Department of Motor Vehicles filed a cease and desist order because the company did not have proper permits.

Uber said its vehicles were not fully autonomous because a human driver was inside the vehicle, but the company later obtained a permit in 2017.

The company is listed as an Autonomous Vehicle Testing Permit holder on the California DMV website as of earlier this month.

The DMV has only reported one traffic collision involving an Uber self-driving vehicle since 2017.

On August 6, 2017, the DMV reported that an Uber vehicle was hit from behind at 2:55 p.m. while waiting at a traffic light on Geary Boulevard and Third Avenue in San Francisco.

The Uber “co-pilot” later reported wrist discomfort, but there were no other injuries, according to DMV documents. Police were not called to the scene.

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