Update Wednesday: Hmm, was the Uber vehicle that crashed in Arizona trying to beat a light? A witness thought so, Bloomberg reports.
Update: An Uber spokesman said Monday, “We are resuming our development operations in San Francisco this morning.”
Later, vehicles in Arizona and Pittsburgh were expected to resume by day’s end as well.
Police in Tempe say “the self-driving SUV was obeying the law and the driver in the other car who didn’t yield was cited for a moving violation after the Friday night crash,” AP reported. Not entirely clear is whether the automated vehicle could have stopped even if the other car’s driver was in wrong by failing to yield.
Two operators were reportedly in the front seat of the self-driving vehicle.
Original post: A rollover crash in Arizona has led Uber Technologies Inc. to suspend its self-driving car program there while it investigates what happened, an Uber spokesman said Saturday.
“We are continuing to look into this incident and can confirm we had no backseat passengers in the vehicle,” a spokesman said.
The vehicle in Tempe was in self-driving mode, according to people familiar with the incident. No one is believed to be seriously injured.
A tweeted picture that Uber has not disputed shows an overturned self-driving Volvo with damage to another vehicle.
Local authorities said the driver of the other car was cited for failing to yield, leading to the collision, so it is not clear that anything the automated car did contributed to the incident.
Still, the crash creates another slowdown in efforts to refine and test the technology. It follows the death of a driver in Williston, Fla. last year using a Tesla vehicle’s autopilot program, which apparently failed to distinguish between the sky and a light-colored truck crossing a highway.
The Arizona incident also comes after the New York Times reported drivers claimed Uber self-driving cars failed to recognize red lights in San Francisco.
Big forward-looking companies have invested giant piles of dollars in self-driving technology, which advocates say can lead to a safer and more convenient future. In the meantime, a survey by AAA shows three out of four drivers fear autonomous cars, The Palm Beach Post reported earlier this month.