Thursday, 3 March 2016

Google Self-Driving Car Hits A Bus


Google’s Popular Self-Driving Cars Involved in a Crash

It may not be the first time that one of Google’s popular self-driving cars had been involved in a crash though it may be the first time it had triggered one. Google would be meeting with California’s Department of Motor Vehicles – DMV for discussion on the incident and identify the blame. The car had been travelling at 2mph on February 14 and had pulled out in front of a public bus that was going at 15mph.

The person in the Google vehicle had reported that he presumed that the bus would slow down to let the car out and hence he did not supersede the car’s self-driving computer. The crash had taken place in Mountain View in the vicinity of Google’s headquarters. Google had mentioned in a statement that they clearly bear some responsibility because if their car had not moved, there would have been a collision.

Considering that the test driver was of the belief that the bus would be going slow or stop to permit them to merge in the traffic, and that there would be adequate space to do so.The self-driving cars of the company had clocked up well over million miles across different states in the US and till now had reported only minor `fender benders’ which is an American slang for minor collision.

Google Refined its Self-Driving Process

Other road users were to be blamed in all of those cases. Google tends to release monthly report specifying the testing of its self-driving technology and ahead of the report’s publication of February, due on Tuesday, a traffic incident filing had been made public by the DMV.

The report read that `the Google AV – autonomous vehicle, test driver saw the bus approaching in the left side mirror but believed the bus would stop or slow to allow the Google AV to continue. Approximately three second later, as the Google AV was re-entering the centre of the lane, it made contact with the side of the bus.

 The Google AV was operating in autonomous mode and travelling at less than two mph while the bus was travelling at around 15mph at the time of contact’. The report stated that the movement of the car were made more complex by the presence of sandbags on the road. Google has informed that it has now refined its self-driving process.

Self-Driving Computer Similar Legal Treatment as Human Driver

Google has mentioned that henceforth, their cars will understand more deeply that buses would be less likely to yield to them than other types of vehicles and hope to handle situations like this more gracefully in future. If DMV tends to consider the Google car to be at fault for the collision, it would be perceived as a setback for the ambitious autonomous vehicle plans of the company.

The bus crash had taken place just four days after a legal breakthrough for the self-driving project. The US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration had informed Google that it would probably give the self-driving computer similar legal treatment as human driver and that decision paved the way for self-driving cars without any distinctive controls like a steering wheel or pedals.

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