posted in Autofan News section March 26, 2017

Uber's Self-Driving Volvo Had an Accident in Tempe, AZ

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Uber's Self-Driving Volvo Had an Accident in Tempe, AZ Uber's Self-Driving Volvo Had an Accident in Tempe, AZ Uber's Self-Driving Volvo Had an Accident in Tempe, AZ Uber's Self-Driving Volvo Had an Accident in Tempe, AZ Uber's Self-Driving Volvo Had an Accident in Tempe, AZ Uber's Self-Driving Volvo Had an Accident in Tempe, AZ

As you all know, Uber is in rough waters lately. Recently, we witnessed Uber CEO, Travis Kalanick, arguing over falling fares. Then coming back with a public apology and promising to better his management skills. Just when we thought the troubles were behind, yesterday Uber came across another issue. Uber’s much publicized, self-driving, highly sophisticated Volvo SUVs got into an accident, leaving the vehicle flipped on its side.  It appears to be a high-speed crash, and damages to at least two other human-driven cars.

Uber has provided a public statement: “We are continuing to look into this incident and can confirm we had no backseat passengers in the vehicle.” Because of this incident, Uber’s rest of the self-driving fleet has been suspended until the cause of the accident is researched and investigation completed.

Another concerning incident involving an Uber self-driving car occurred last December in California, when one of its vehicles ran a red light — though Uber blamed this on human error, rather than the fault of the self-driving tech. (Although a New York Times report, citing two Uber sources, claimed the opposite.)

Leaked internal corporate documents have also suggested Uber’s self-driving technology isn’t making steady improvements.

In February, the head of Uber’s self-drive program — who is himself being sued for allegedly stealing technology from Google’s Waymo, where he used to work, and using it to set up Otto, the self-driving truck startup that Uber acquired in August last year — confirmed Uber has 12 self-driving cars on the roads in Phoenix and Pittsburgh.

On top of all of this, Uber is also facing a storm of controversy over allegations of systemic sexism which hurts its corporate culture — with president Jeff Jones leaving in recent days, and reports that Uber denied recruiters diversity data, piling more pressure on founder and CEO Travis Kalanick.

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