Bus that runs without a driver gets involved in an accident on the 1st day of operation

A micro-bus with self-guided technology – no driver, driven by a computer – got involved in a crash right the day of its debut. The vehicle was hit by a truck, which was moving at low speed on a Las Vegas street. Nobody got hurt. The blame for the accident was attributed to the truck driver – who was fined by the police. The bus was the first of its kind to travel along US public roads. The collision occurred a day after Waymo – Alphabet’s self-guided car unit (Google owner) – announced that it is putting a fleet of fully autonomous taxis in the city of Phoenix, Arizona. The self-guided bus in Las Vegas was designed to carry passengers on the city’s most famous street, the Strip, home to major hotels and casinos. The vehicle uses a system developed by Navya, a French company that is also testing the self-guided technology in London. The micro-bus has a maximum capacity of 15 passengers and does not exceed 45 km / h, although it normally follows an average speed of 25 km / h. Human failure A Las Vegas city spokesman told the BBC that the crash was light, and that the bus will re-run on Thursday, after undergoing a routine inspection. “A delivery truck was coming out of a lane,” Jace Radke of the city’s intelligence service said. “The bus did what it was supposed to do and stopped, unfortunately the human element, the truck driver, did not stop.” Self-driven vehicles had previously been involved in accidents and, as now, most reported incidents were attributed to the “human element.” In Arizona, a vehicle of the type, which was being tested by Uber, ended up crashing into another car, after the driver did not give way. In 2016, a man died in an accident involving a Tesla Model S with autonomous functions. The investigation of the case indicated that computer crashes may have caused the accident. Tesla was instructed to more clearly expose the limitations of its technology to drivers. Expandable technology Experts, however, say that in spite of these incidents, the use of self-guided technology has shown that it is able to make the streets safer. A study by Rand Corporation, a not-for-profit research organization published this week, advocates that the technology reach the market, despite imperfections.

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