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    Thread: Uber pulls self-driving cars after first fatal crash of autonomous vehicle

    1. Senior Member 2.0T_Convert's Avatar
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      03-19-2018 03:10 PM #1
      Sorry if repost.

      Uber has removed its self-driving cars from the roads following what is believed to be the first fatality involving a fully autonomous car.

      A self-driving Uber SUV struck and killed a pedestrian in Tempe, Arizona, Sunday night, according to the Tempe police. The department is investigating the crash.

      A driver was behind the wheel at the time, the police said.

      "The vehicle involved is one of Uber's self-driving vehicles," the Tempe police said in a statement. "It was in autonomous mode at the time of the collision, with a vehicle operator behind the wheel."

      Autonomous mode means the car is driving on its own. During tests, a person sits behind the wheel as a safeguard.

      Uber is conducting tests of autonomous vehicles in Arizona, Pittsburgh, Toronto and other areas. Uber said it has stopped testing the vehicles throughout the United States and Canada.
      CNN

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    3. Member Smooremin's Avatar
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      03-19-2018 03:13 PM #2
      Was just about to post this. It was only a matter of time.
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      03-19-2018 03:14 PM #3
      Quote Originally Posted by 2.0T_Convert View Post
      Sorry if repost.



      CNN
      so what was the human doing?....

      do they have cameras on those cars? Tough to assign blame without knowing if the ped came from out of nowhere.

    5. Member ClownCar's Avatar
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      03-19-2018 03:22 PM #4
      Interesting. CNN headline basically says person dies in accident involving self-driving car.

      Jalopnik headline basically points to murder committed by the vehicle: https://jalopnik.com/uber-pauses-all...ede-1823891483
      Yarp or narp?

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      03-19-2018 03:24 PM #5
      Quote Originally Posted by DasCC View Post
      so what was the human doing?....

      do they have cameras on those cars? Tough to assign blame without knowing if the ped came from out of nowhere.
      I'm sure there were cameras but if you were Uber would you release the footage? I think they'll probably hold onto it unless there's a court order demanding otherwise. Certainly there will be in the upcoming law suit, but who knows if it'll go public.
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      03-19-2018 03:24 PM #6
      Self driving tech =/= no deaths, just reduced deaths. It could be the pedestrian walked out in front of the Uber at last minute (exiting a bus then walking in front of the bus and crossing the street for example) and the Uber just didn't have enough time to stop. Halting all autonomous cars is just a precautionary move until they understand what's going on.
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      03-19-2018 03:31 PM #7
      It begins.

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      03-19-2018 03:33 PM #8
      Quote Originally Posted by chucchinchilla View Post
      Self driving tech =/= no deaths, just reduced deaths. It could be the pedestrian walked out in front of the Uber at last minute (exiting a bus then walking in front of the bus and crossing the street for example) and the Uber just didn't have enough time to stop. Halting all autonomous cars is just a precautionary move until they understand what's going on.
      If that's the case and the human driver also would not have had time to react, then it is possible that the autonomy hardware can be found to not be at fault here. If that is found, I don't see this hampering autonomous driving tech, at least from Uber's perspective. To save face, however, they will lose ground in dealing with this.
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      03-19-2018 03:33 PM #9
      https://www.abc15.com/news/region-so...rash-overnight
      TEMPE - Tempe police are investigating a deadly crash involving a self-driving Uber vehicle overnight.

      The crash occurred near Mill Avenue and Curry Road around 10 p.m. Sunday night.

      The Uber vehicle was reportedly headed northbound when a woman walking outside of the crosswalk was struck.

      The woman, identified as 49-year-old Elaine Herzberg, was taken to the hospital where she died from her injuries.

      Tempe Police says the vehicle was in autonomous mode at the time of the crash and a vehicle operator was also behind the wheel. No passengers were in the vehicle at the time.

      An Uber spokesperson told ABC15 they are aware of the incident and are cooperating with authorities.

      They released the following statement: "Our hearts go out to the victim’s family. We are fully cooperating with local authorities in their investigation of this incident."

      Uber's CEO Dara Khosrowshahi also acknowledged the incident on Twitter:

      Some incredibly sad news out of Arizona. We’re thinking of the victim’s family as we work with local law enforcement to understand what happened. https://t.co/cwTCVJjEuz
      — dara khosrowshahi (@dkhos) March 19, 2018


      Uber has paused self-driving operations in Phoenix, Pittsburgh, San Francisco and Toronto, which is a standard move, the company says.

      The police investigation is still active, and the National Transportation Safety Board also tweeted Monday that they will be investigating.

      Uber began testing self-driving cars in Tempe in February 2017. The fleet of self-driving Volvos arrived in Arizona after they were banned from California roads over safety concerns. Gov. Doug Ducey touted Arizona as a testing ground, saying at the time in a written statement, “Arizona welcomes Uber self-driving cars with open arms and wide open roads.”

      One of the self-driving cars was involved in a crash a month later, after a car failed to yield to the Uber vehicle and hit it, authorities said. The self-driving SUV rolled onto its side as a result crash.

      There were no serious injuries were reported in that crash.
      Close to ASU perhaps...I was working with a competitor operating in the area for a few months, so it hits close to home. If something happens, the whole fleet shuts down. I wonder if others followed as well. I would hate to see some friends be on the news for such unfortunate news because when I drove, my observation was that there are some crazy drivers and folks on the streets there when you go outside of Chandler.

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      03-19-2018 03:36 PM #10
      Quote Originally Posted by DasCC View Post
      so what was the human doing?....
      Reportedly not in a crosswalk, so Jaywalking. I have mixed feelings about this. I never want to see a pedestrian get hit, but I'm also sick of idiots scurrying across the street whenever and wherever they feel like it.
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    12. Senior Member chucchinchilla's Avatar
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      03-19-2018 03:41 PM #11


      I think I found the spot....
      https://www.google.com/maps/@33.4365...7i13312!8i6656


      Now they're saying she was crossing the road without using the crosswalk but there's another nuance to that area which can be tricky for a self driving car. Look at the bike lane how it goes from solid/on the side of the road to essentially crossing one lane of traffic as a right turn only lane opens up. I'm wondering if her "crossing" that lane (but ultimately staying within the bike lane) is what confused the car.
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    13. Member Surf Green's Avatar
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      03-19-2018 03:47 PM #12
      Quote Originally Posted by chucchinchilla View Post
      Now they're saying she was crossing the road without using the crosswalk but there's another nuance to that area which can be tricky for a self driving car. Look at the bike lane how it goes from solid/on the side of the road to essentially crossing one lane of traffic as a right turn only lane opens up. I'm wondering if her "crossing" that lane (but ultimately staying within the bike lane) is what confused the car.
      Interesting. It's plausible. We'll have to wait for the video.

      There's also a sign right across that road from that storm drain. Seems that questionable pedestrian habits were common in this location.
      I keep up with traffic with only 90 hp. What's your superpower?
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      03-19-2018 03:47 PM #13
      Google: We've gone 10 years without a fatal autonomous vehicle accident
      Uber: Hold my beer


      That being said, I know that this was bound to happen, but that it has happened with Uber is just either pure dumb luck or a testament to the corners they cut in all areas of their business.
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      03-19-2018 03:52 PM #14
      Quote Originally Posted by Surf Green View Post
      Reportedly not in a crosswalk, so Jaywalking. I have mixed feelings about this. I never want to see a pedestrian get hit, but I'm also sick of idiots scurrying across the street whenever and wherever they feel like it.
      Yeah that's how I read the article as well. Pedestrians have the right away in AZ I believe, but wouldn't they have to be in the actual cross-walk? If she was in the cross-walk would the car sensors have picked her up? Was the person who was killed under the influence when crossing? A few years back I remember reading that a lot of people who kill pedestrians and jay-walkers rarely face charges. I wonder what will come of this.

      That being said it is a sad situation and I feel for the woman who lost her life. Especially if she has children and/or grand-children.

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      03-19-2018 03:53 PM #15
      This is not good.
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      03-19-2018 03:57 PM #16
      In other news is that pedestrians now wait for a crossing line rather than acting like they are immune to large weighted objects in motion because they have the right of way.
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      03-19-2018 03:59 PM #17
      The driver never saw the cyclist.

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      03-19-2018 04:05 PM #18
      Skynet drew first blood.
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      03-19-2018 04:08 PM #19
      Quote Originally Posted by TheDeckMan View Post
      In other news is that pedestrians now wait for a crossing line rather than acting like they are immune to large weighted objects in motion because they have the right of way.
      This could be a serious road block to high level autonomous vehicles in a dense city center where pedestrians & cyclists constantly break traffic rules and ignore common sense.

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      03-19-2018 04:14 PM #20
      Quote Originally Posted by 2.0T_Convert View Post
      This could be a serious road block to high level autonomous vehicles in a dense city center where pedestrians & cyclists constantly break traffic rules and ignore common sense.
      This may be true, but a person could argue that our existing high-level autonomous traffic officers (now called traffic lights) have already failed in protecting pedestrians and cyclists from their apparent death wish(es). As a society, what more are we obligated to do?
      Yarp or narp?

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      03-19-2018 04:14 PM #21
      Quote Originally Posted by 2.0T_Convert View Post
      This could be a serious road block to high level autonomous vehicles in a dense city center where pedestrians & cyclists constantly break traffic rules and ignore common sense.
      Without a doubt, it is hard enough but for us humans we have something to loose if we strike and kill a pedestrian, so even if we have the right of way we tend to yield. A machine does not care about human life plain and simple, I am not sure you can program it enough to make it be able to.
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      03-19-2018 04:15 PM #22
      Quote Originally Posted by ClownCar View Post
      This may be true, but a person could argue that our existing high-level autonomous traffic officers (now called traffic lights) have already failed in protecting pedestrians and cyclists from their apparent death wish(es). As a society, what more are we obligated to do?
      Perhaps if they have a death wish we let the machines thin the herd? Darwin would agree.
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      03-19-2018 04:21 PM #23
      Quote Originally Posted by ClownCar View Post
      This may be true, but a person could argue that our existing high-level autonomous traffic officers (now called traffic lights) have already failed in protecting pedestrians and cyclists from their apparent death wish(es). As a society, what more are we obligated to do?
      Traffic lights have been around for a long time while high level autonomous vehicles are new and still not legal in every state. I can see knee jerk reactions to injuries resulting in either outright bans or requirements to have a human driving assistant.

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      03-19-2018 04:31 PM #24
      So she was walking or was she riding a bike? Or was she walking her bike? Not blaming anyone for anything, just trying to understand because the stories mention a pedestrian, but the picture shows someone on a bicycle.

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      03-19-2018 05:29 PM #25
      Quote Originally Posted by chucchinchilla View Post


      I think I found the spot....
      https://www.google.com/maps/@33.4365...7i13312!8i6656


      Now they're saying she was crossing the road without using the crosswalk but there's another nuance to that area which can be tricky for a self driving car. Look at the bike lane how it goes from solid/on the side of the road to essentially crossing one lane of traffic as a right turn only lane opens up. I'm wondering if her "crossing" that lane (but ultimately staying within the bike lane) is what confused the car.
      There are a lot of bike lines in Phoenix that have a similar setup to the one the accident occurred at. I am fairly familiar with that area, since I used to work in Tempe, and my wife and I like to take the dogs to the Tempe Lake. I have parked our car near that intersection. Can't really think of anything strange about that specific intersection. The ASU campus is near by, but on the other side of the Loop 202 Freeway; now that area is a pain in the ass to drive in. Curious to find out the details of this accident.

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