Driverless cars involved in three separate SF traffic incidents Thursday

Category
AutonomyConflict or crisis
Priority
Priority
Release date
September 23, 2022
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SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — In separate incidents on Thursday night, three Cruise driverless vehicles created disruptions and blocked traffic on the streets of San Francisco, with one vehicle appearing to have come to a stop in close proximity to a bus.

Video footage and photos obtained by KRON4 News appear to show a Cruise driverless vehicle in close proximity to a San Francisco Muni bus. The photos obtained by KRON4 show a Cruise driverless vehicle that has somehow crossed over the line into the bus’s lane and come to a stop. The bus was stopped alongside the vehicle.

According to the viewer who submitted the photos, the incident took place at about 10:19 p.m. Thursday on Geary Street at Franklin.

KRON4 reached out to Cruise and received a statement from a spokesperson who said there was no collision involving a Cruise autonomous vehicle Thursday night.

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    Photo credit: Emma Becerra

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In a separate incident, members of the KRON4 News team came across another Cruise self-driving car that had stopped driving in the middle of the street, blocking Sacramento at Mason. The vehicle, which had the name “Jasper” on it, had its hazard lights on and was playing music. The vehicle was blocking traffic, and a Muni bus had to re-route around it.

KRON4 reporter Dan Thorn contacted the first responder information displayed on the dash in the car. Cruise had a team respond to the scene about 20 minutes later.

A spokesperson from Cruise said the company was looking into the incident at Sacramento and Mason, but confirmed that no passenger impact, injuries or collisions had occurred in relation to the incident.

In a third incident Thursday, two Cruise vehicles appear to have stalled back-to-back in the vicinity of Sacramento and Leavenworth. Witnesses told KRON4’s Ella Sogomonian that cars and buses were blocked by the stalled vehicles. The incident took place around 10 p.m.

A Cruise spokesperson provided the following statement regarding the incidents:

“Safety is the guiding principle of everything we do. That means if our cars encounter a situation where they aren’t able to safely proceed they stop and turn on their hazard lights and we either get them operating again or pick them up as quickly as possible. This could be because of a mechanical issue like a flat tire, a road condition, or a technical problem. We’re working to minimize how often this happens, and apologize to Ella, Dan, and any other impacted drivers.”

KRON4 reached out to SFMTA and the agency responded saying it had no regulatory authority over Cruise vehicles.