Self-driv­ing car ac­ci­dents de­tailed

Los Angeles Times - - BUSINESS BEAT - As­so­ci­ated press

Cal­i­for­nia state of­fi­cials re­leased re­ports Thurs­day de­tail­ing six ac­ci­dents that in­volved self-driv­ing car pro­to­types, re­vers­ing a pol­icy that had shielded de­tails of how the next-gen­er­a­tion tech­nol­ogy is per­form­ing dur­ing test­ing on public roads.

The dis­clo­sure came af­ter the As­so­ci­ated Press ar­gued to the Depart­ment of Mo­tor Ve­hi­cles that the agency was im­prop­erly with­hold­ing the in­for­ma­tion.

Ac­cord­ing to the re­ports, most of the cars were in self­driv­ing mode when the ac­ci­dents hap­pened, and the other driver caused the ac­ci­dent. None of the crashes were se­ri­ous enough to in­jure the per­son the state re­quires to sit be­hind the wheel, and none of the peo­ple in the other cars were treated for in­juries ei­ther.

The com­pa­nies that op­er­ated the cars — tech ti­tan Google and parts sup­plier Del­phi Automotive — sub­mit­ted their own ac­counts of the ac­ci­dents.

Led by Google, self-driv­ing cars have been run­ning on public roads since 2009. It was only in Septem­ber, how­ever, that the DMV of­fi­cially be­gan per­mit­ting the test­ing and re­quir­ing com­pa­nies to file ac­ci­dent re­ports.

Un­til now, the agency said it could not re­veal de­tails about self-driv­ing car ac­ci­dents, cit­ing state law mak­ing col­li­sion re­ports con­fi­den­tial.

Eight com­pa­nies have per­mis­sion to test 82 self-driv­ing cars in Cal­i­for­nia. Google has driven the most miles driven (about 1.8 mil­lion) and li­censed the most pro­to­types (53).

Af­ter the As­so­ci­ated Press re­ported last month that there had been three Google ac­ci­dents and one Del­phi ac­ci­dent, Google self-driv­ing car pro­ject leader Chris Urm­son re­vealed in a blog post that its cars had been in­volved in eight other ac­ci­dents be­tween 2010 and July 2014.

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