Toyota Stops Testing Self-Driving Cars Following Fatal Uber Crash

Pedestrian killed by self-driving Uber car in Arizona police say

Other companies testing various forms of autonomous vehicles in many places and phases-ranging from General Motors to Google's Waymo, from Domino's to Tesla-are likely to re-examine or at least pause in the pace of their trials to evaluate what happened to the female victim, whose identity hasn't been made public. Certainly, the safety driver, who was behind the wheel at the time of the collision, was unable to react in time.

Anthony Foxx, who served as US Secretary of Transportation under former President Barack Obama, called the accident a "wake up call to the entire [autonomous vehicle] industry and government to put a high priority on safety". A statement from the company's Twitter account said: "Some incredibly sad news out of Arizona".

"We believe we have enough in our laws right now to regulate automobiles", Biesty told Reuters.

Several of the white SUVs loaded with LIDAR equipment have been spotted out of the roads since Apple was granted permission to test self driving cars publicly. Safety regulators later determined Tesla was not at fault. We need to figure out how to avoid future tragedies, given the increasing use of driverless cars.

So far, no one is accusing the safety driver behind the wheel of the self-driving vehicle, but the incident is still under investigation.

Rafaela Vasquez was at the wheel of the vehicle, which was in auto mode, when it struck Elaine Herzberg as she was walking a bicycle outside the crosswalk in Tempe at 10 p.m. on Sunday night. "Ultimately the investigation will be submitted to the Maricopa County Attorney's Office for review and any potential charges". Uber had been testing the technology in other cities, including San Francisco, Toronto and Pittsburgh.

The legislation would also prevent individual states from adopting tougher rules on self-driving cars. Almost all of them have been blamed on human motorists hitting the autonomous vehicle. Hundreds of vehicles with automated driving systems have been on Arizona's roads.

Peter Kurdock, director of regulatory affairs for Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety in Washington, said the group sent a letter Monday to Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao saying it is concerned about a lack of action and oversight by the department as autonomous vehicles are developed. GM has said it plans to launch a robo-taxi service developed with its Cruise Automation unit next year, and said on Tuesday it stood by that timeline. However, the police chief of Tempe, Arizona, the place where the fatal accident occurred, says a preliminary investigation into the matter reveals that Uber is "likely" not at fault for what happened, and that it would have been hard to avoid the outcome whether a human driver was in charge or a series of sensors and cameras. But the Uber-related fatality could provoke a slowdown in the whole process.

"What this incident indicates is that the state of autonomous driving (and especially Uber) is very far from where it needs to be to become market-ready", Richard Windsor, technology analyst for London-based Edison Investment Research, said in a blog post on Tuesday.

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