accidents Stories January 12, 2016

Google published today its annual report on disengagements of autonomous mode for its self-driving car program (SDC), which is required by California’s DMV. The report details events where Google’s test drivers have taken control over the car’s autonomous system, whether it’d be because of a shutdown due to technology failure or for safety reasons.

After having driven over 1.3 million miles in autonomous mode, Google’s self-driving cars were involved in 17 reported accidents, but the company prides itself of not having been at fault in any of them. But with today’s report, we learn the self-driving cars would have caused 10 accidents during the past year if test drivers wouldn’t have disengaged the system and taken controls. expand full story

accidents Stories November 4, 2015

Up to June of this year, Google’s self-driving cars had yet to be at fault in any accidents, and it seems that record has held true over the last few months. Of the dozen or so accidents up to that point, the majority had happened when the self-driving car wasn’t even moving, and the rest occurred when Google’s safety drivers were in control of the vehicles.

Unfortunately, in the months after Google released the first report, Google’s cars continued to see a couple of accidents per month. But that trend has come to an interesting halt recently. As we’ve learned thanks to Google’s recently-published October report, the self-driving cars have now gone more than two months without a single accident… expand full story

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accidents Stories June 25, 2015

According to a recent post on Google+, Google’s new cute self-driving car prototypes are now driving the roads of Mountain View. As was mentioned previously, they’re taking some cues from how the company’s previous line of Lexus self-driving vehicles. This first run of a few of the new ‘Koala’ prototype will have a safety driver on board with a “removable” steering wheel, accelerator, and brake — just in case…

These prototype vehicles are designed from the ground up to be fully self-driving. They’re ultimately designed to work without a steering wheel or pedals, but during this phase of our project we’ll have safety drivers aboard with a removable steering wheel, accelerator pedal, and brake pedal that allow them to take over driving if needed. The prototypes’ speed is capped at a neighborhood-friendly 25mph, and they’ll drive using the same software that our existing Lexus vehicles use—the same fleet that has self-driven over 1 million miles since we started the project.

According to Google, the speed of the cars is currently capped at a pretty conservative 25 miles per hour, and they’re driving around at that “neighborhood-friendly” speed using the same software that powered the Lexus line. Ultimately, the goal is for them to be completely autonomous, but it would make sense that Google wants to take that slow to avoid any more sensationalized stories about their safety… expand full story

accidents Stories June 5, 2015

Google has launched a new website that will offer monthly updates on its driverless car project including reporting accidents the vehicles have been involved in. expand full story

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