Autonomous Murderbots are Going Great

Cruise's driverless cars continue to stop in the middle of SF's streets for extended periods of time, often in groups, blocking traffic until they can be remotely restarted or manually retrieved by Cruise staff. Over the past week, there were at least four such incidents.

The City's letter to NHTSA provides specific data on these incidents. Between May 29 and Sept. 5 of this year, 28 incidents of stopped Cruise cars blocking traffic were reported to 911. The City identified an additional 20 such incidents reported on social media over that time period, which does not include the events of the past week. The City estimates that these figures represent "a fraction of actual travel lane road failures." [...]

The City's letter also raises concerns about Cruise cars' ability to pull over to the curb to pick up passengers. Currently, Cruise vehicles primarily double park in the travel lane when picking up and dropping off passengers, The City claims. That practice could exacerbate the vehicles' traffic impacts. [...]

San Francisco has no authority to regulate the autonomous vehicles on its streets, despite being the global epicenter of autonomous vehicle testing. In its letter, The City provided data to support this claim: Since NHTSA began tracking autonomous vehicle collisions nationwide in June 2021, two-thirds of those collisions took place in San Francisco. [...]

The City says that 68% of Cruise's travel lane failures have occurred on streets with a bus or streetcar line, and more than 80% have occurred on streets considered part of the "high-injury network," where most traffic accidents take place.

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17 Responses:

  1. Dagon says:

    Have SF officials explained why they can't ticket these cars for municipal violations?  At least the city should get some revenue from this clusterfuck.

    • Dave says:

      Yeah, they may not be able to regulate them, but it seems like they could come up with some law for obstructing traffic with huge fines, that definitely doesn't only apply to driverless taxis,  wink, wink.

    • CSL3 says:

      Mayor London Breed - like her mentor/predecessor Ed Lee - believes that corporations are people. If the corporation Cruise were to be cited for the danger their cars posed, that would hurt that "person"'s feelings. If that "person" has hurt feelings, then they won't pay rent on office space and won't be able to take advantage of all the tax breaks they get whilst we meat-bags pay higher taxes and try our damndest not to survive this still-ongoing-pandemic.

      You wouldn't want to hurt the feelings of the "person" known as Cruise, would you? Of course not. So, the next time you see one of their killer JohnnyCabs comin' at'cha, just do what Street Preacher would do:

      • Landa says:

        So she‘s basically the polar opposite on the crazyball from those weirdos that think that laws only apply to a separate corporate with their name somehow created through birth certificates?

  2. Eric says:

    To be fair when people use the phrase "unsafe at any speed" to refer to the dangers of automobiles, I don't think they mean 0 MPH.

    • Pinback says:

      When Nader coined that phrase, I do believe he considered even cars at a stop light were unsafe, as their fuel tanks were subject to rupture when the vehicle was struck.

  3. MattyJ says:

    Jeez, what you you people want? When these cars go too fast and kill people you complain. When they don't move at all and don't kill people, you complain. You can't have it both ways.

    • A says:

      This is a dumb argument, because both options in this false dichotomy are bad, even if at different levels. I'd rather they drive properly or not at all, and currently they can't do that.

    • Not Frank says:

      Ah, but they aren't not moving at all; if that were the case, they never would've made it to the middle of a crowded street.

  4. Hylyx says:

    So if somenone with a large vehicle they may or may not live in (safely) winched or (less safely) shoved these Johnny Cabs out of the damn way is that a civil penalty, criminal penalty, or public service?

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