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March 27, 2017

Uber Self-Driving Car Testing Screeches to Halt After Crash

Uber has temporarily halted its self-driving car testing after one of its vehicles was involved in a collision in Tempe, Arizona.

The ride-hailing service has stopped all on-road testing in both Arizona and Pittsburgh, PA., where its Advanced Technologies Center (ATC) is located, after Uber’s autonomous Volvo collided with another vehicle.

The driver of the other vehicle involved in the crash failed to yield despite Uber’s SUV, which was in self-driving mode at the time, having the right of way, Tempe police said. No one was injured.

A photo posted to Twitter shows Uber’s SUV on its side beside another vehicle with significant damage to its back end, including broken windows.

An Uber spokeswoman told Bloomberg the company has stopped all autonomous tests in Arizona until it completes an investigation into the incident. It has also paused testing at its Pittsburgh location as a precaution.

“We are continuing to look into this incident and can confirm we had no backseat passengers in the vehicle,” the spokeswoman said.

News of the collision comes at a trying time for Uber, which is in the middle of a lawsuit with Waymo, Google’s self-driving car unit. Waymo is suing Uber in federal court alleging the high-tech ride-hailing service and its subsidiary Otto stole elements of its self-driving technology.

Uber was also accused of sexism by a former engineer. The company appointed former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to a panel put together to investigate the claims.

The company has also been under fire for its treatment of its drivers and was forced to shell out $20 million to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that it misled prospective drivers.

Back in January, a#DeleteUber campaign was started via social media to protest Uber CEO Travis Kalanick’s involvement in President Donald Trump’s economic advisory council. The company lost 200,000 customers as a result.

On top of that Uber is losing its president, Jeff Jones, after just six months at the high-tech ride-hailing company. He cited differences in leadership philosophies, saying his values and approach to leadership do not mesh with those of Uber.


Jennifer Cowan is the Managing Editor for SiteProNews.