Self-driving car accidents detailed
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.