San Francisco, CA – Concerns about the safety of autonomous driving technology are on the rise after a Cruise robotaxi recently collided with the back of a bus in San Francisco.
Although no injuries were reported in the incident, it marks yet another setback for General Motors’ subsidiary Cruise and casts doubt on the future of self-driving vehicles.
At least self-driving cars won’t be needing a San Francisco personal injury lawyer, but they may need a software update to avoid getting into an accident in the first place!
The Autonomous Driving Industry’s Struggles
While artificial intelligence (AI) is making significant advancements in various fields, the autonomous driving industry has encountered numerous obstacles. The rapid progress of AI in commercial applications, such as OpenAI’s GPT-4, stands in stark contrast to the slow and uncertain development of self-driving technology.
Several companies are currently working on autonomous driving solutions, but only a few are expected to make it to market in the coming years. Ford and Volkswagen have terminated their partnership with Argo AI, while Waymo has reportedly scaled back its operations. Cruise, though optimistic about its prospects, has faced criticism for burning through billions of dollars and progressing too slowly.
The Cruise Robotaxi Incident
On March 23, 2023, a Cruise robotaxi crashed into the rear of a Muni bus in San Francisco, reigniting the debate on self-driving technology. The circumstances of the SF car accident remain unclear, as it is not known whether the robotaxi hit the moving bus or if the bus cut in front of the robotaxi as it exited the station. Thankfully, no one was injured in the incident, as the robotaxi was not carrying any passengers at the time.
While such minor collisions are common among human-driven vehicles, incidents involving autonomous vehicles tend to draw more attention and scrutiny. Since beginning its testing phase in 2016, Cruise autonomous vehicles have been involved in over 200 traffic incidents and accidents. Some of these occurrences have led to injuries, like a June 3, 2022 crash that occurred shortly after Cruise received permission to operate its commercial robotaxi service.
Previous Cruise Incidents and NHTSA Investigation
In other incidents, Cruise robotaxis have inexplicably stopped in the middle of the road, prompting the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to open an investigation in December. Additionally, two Cruise autonomous cars recently entered a street blocked off by caution tape and became entangled in utility wires that had been downed during a storm.
The growing number of incidents involving autonomous vehicles has led to public skepticism and criticism of the technology, regardless of the potential safety benefits they may offer in the future.
Injured in an accident? Call GJEL Accident Attorneys
If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, GJEL Accident Attorneys in San Francisco are here to provide support and assistance during this difficult time. We understand the challenges you may be facing, and we are committed to helping you navigate them.
If you need legal help after an accident, don’t hesitate to contact us. We offer free consultations and are available to answer any questions you may have. You can reach us at 220 Montgomery St Suite 2100, San Francisco, CA 94105, or by phone at (415) 986-4777. Let us help you navigate this difficult time and get the justice you deserve.