Uber Self-Driving Car Crash May Be Due to LIDAR Blind Spot

Uber Self-Driving Car Crash May Be Due to LIDAR Blind Spot

The family of an Arizona woman killed when struck by an autonomous Uber vehicle apparently has reached a settlement with the company. Toyota Motor Corp and chipmaker Nvidia Corp have also suspended self-driving auto testing on public roads, as they and other companies await the results of an investigation into the Tempe incident, believed to be the first death of a pedestrian struck by a self-driving vehicle. I'll bet Uber already has a pretty good idea of what happened, but so far they aren't telling.

The successful completion of the test, done with the cooperation of ZTE and China Telecom, is expected to kick off 5G's application in autonomous driving as a high-speed, reliable network is essential for driverless cars to be deemed safe in sometimes chaotic, unpredictable real world conditions. Uber's competitor Waymo's chief executive said autonomous vehicles of his company would never have bumped into a pedestrian.

California requires all autonomous vehicle makers to get special registrations for their vehicles and the cars' operators, to submit reports of all accidents, and to produce an annual report on "disengagements", situations in which the human operator needed to take over from the robot one.

The driver of the self-driving Uber can be seen appearing to look down in the moments just before the fatal collision.

The turning point appeared to be the release by police of the video from the dashboard of the Uber showing the moments before the Volvo SUV hit 49-year-old Elaine Herzberg at almost 40 miles per hour as she crossed a road in Tempe.

The company will also be required to formally respond to all active investigations into the pedestrian's death that occurred just one week ago, when a sports utility vehicle hit a pedestrian.

Nvidia Moves Self-Driving Car Tests from Road to Data Center
Uber proactively suspended self-driving operations in all cities following the accident. News of Nvidia's self-driving auto testing suspension was first reported by Reuters .

Uber didn't violate antitrust laws in its competition with Philadelphia's taxi companies, a court affirmed this week in another blow to the cab industry's efforts to strike back at ride-hailing companies through the law.

"We continue to help investigators in any way we can, " the company said in a press statement.

For self-driving cars that's the open road.

Uber suspended its autonomous vehicle testing program in Arizona, California, Pittsburgh and Toronto after the crash.

Uber declined to comment on the specifics of Ron's departure. Her death is being considered as one of the first fatalities involving a self-driving vehicle.

The Mercury News reported the driver died in a hospital Friday, the day of the crash. Many auto manufacturers have been striving to develop self-driving technology and launch the autonomous vehicle in the market as soon as possible to gain first-mover's advantage.

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