A self-driving vehicle operated by Waymo was involved in a crash in Chandler, Arizona, on Friday afternoon, according to local news stations. Images of the crash scene showed a Waymo minivan with its side caved in and another vehicle with a smashed front end. There were minor injuries reported at the scene.
Chandler police said the Waymo van was in autonomous mode with an occupant behind the wheel at the time of the crash, but it was not the “violator vehicle,” according to ABC 15 News. A spokesperson for the Chandler Police Department and Waymo did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
In March, a self-driving Uber vehicle struck and killed a pedestrian, the first known victim of a crash involving a self-driving car. In the wake of the crash, Uber has halted its self-driving tests nationwide, and the industry has faced renewed scrutiny. Waymo CEO John Krafcik said publicly that his tech would have avoided the crash.
— Matt Jaffee (@mattjaffee) May 4, 2018
Update May 4th, 2018 6:01pm ET: A spokesperson for the Chandler police department sent the following statement:
We are currently investigating a minor injury collision involving two vehicles, one of which is a Waymo autonomous vehicle. This afternoon around noon a vehicle (Honda sedan) traveling eastbound on Chandler Blvd. had to swerve to avoid striking a vehicle traveling northbound on Los Feliz Dr. As the Honda swerved, the vehicle continued eastbound into the westbound lanes of Chandler Blvd. & struck the Waymo vehicle, which was traveling at a slow speed and in autonomous mode. There was an occupant in the Waymo vehicle sitting in the driver’s seat, who sustained minor injuries. Both the Waymo vehicle & the Honda were towed from the scene. This incident is still under investigation.