The California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) has ordered Cruise, a self-driving car company under GM, to suspend its services indefinitely due to safety concerns. According to the DMV, Cruise has failed to comply with four key safety regulations, with the most critical being the lack of sufficient safety measures for its autonomous vehicles to operate on public roads.
TechCrunch reported that the incident that triggered this suspension occurred in San Francisco on October 2nd. A Cruise vehicle was stopped at a red light alongside a Nissan car when a pedestrian walked in front of both vehicles. The Nissan collided with the pedestrian and the impact caused the person to be trapped beneath the Cruise vehicle.
This unfortunate incident revealed flaws in Cruise’s decision-making algorithm regarding traffic obstruction and resulted in further harm to the injured pedestrian, who was dragged an additional 20 meters by the autonomous vehicle before it came to a halt. The Nissan car involved in the incident fled the scene.
Upon investigating the incident, the DMV discovered that Cruise had deliberately withheld all video footage of the event, preventing the DMV from being aware that the injured person was dragged by the Cruise vehicle. This lack of transparency and attempt to conceal information did not sit well with the DMV, leading to their decision to halt Cruise’s operations.
Nevertheless, the DMV’s suspension allows Cruise to continue operating if they have a safety driver present in the vehicle. Cruise has stated that they will comply with this requirement and immediately pause their driverless operations.
In summary, the California DMV has suspended Cruise’s driverless permits due to safety concerns and Cruise’s non-compliance with regulations. An incident involving a pedestrian being trapped and dragged by a Cruise vehicle revealed deficiencies in the company’s algorithm and their attempt to hide crucial information. Cruise’s operations can resume with a safety driver onboard.
TLDR: The California DMV has ordered Cruise, a self-driving car company, to stop its driverless services indefinitely after an incident involving a pedestrian being trapped and dragged by a Cruise vehicle. Cruise’s decision to withhold video footage of the incident has led to the suspension. The DMV allows Cruise to continue operating with a safety driver present.