A self-driving shuttle launched in Las Vegas - it didn't go well

Randall Padilla
November 12, 2017

According to the Review-Journal, police ticketed the driver for "illegal backing".

The driverless electric shuttle in downtown Las Vegas, pictured on November 9, 2017, is back on the road one day after it was involved in an accident with a truck.

A City of Las Vegas representative said in a statement that the shuttle "did what it was supposed to do, in that its sensors registered the truck and the shuttle stopped to avoid the accident". Within an hour of starting its new expanded operation today, following a two-week pilot test back in January, the shuttle hit the front end of a large delivery truck as the human driver pulled out into the street from a loading bay. "Unfortunately the human element, the driver of the truck, didn't stop". Testing of the shuttle will continue during the 12-month pilot in the downtown Innovation District.

This is not the first time that self-driving technology has been involved in a crash.

A driverless shuttle bus was in a auto accident the first day the electric vehicle was being tested in Las Vegas. Sponsored by AAA, the shuttle is intended less for its actual utility and more to get people used to the idea of driverless cars.

The shuttle makes a continuous loop in downtown Las Vegas, and the rides are free. In return, the company will donate $1 per every passenger who rides the shuttle to those affected by the mass shooting in Las Vegas that took place in October. The shuttle is operated and maintained by Keolis, which also led the efforts to integrate its vehicle into the smart-city infrastructure, in partnership with the city of Las Vegas and NAVYA. That said, some are questioning the autonomous vehicle's roadworthiness since it was apparently unable to back up or try and turn to avoid the collision.

The shuttle can be boarded at any of the autonomous-vehicle shuttle's three stops located on Fremont Street and Carson Street between Las Vegas Boulevard and 8 Street.

Other reports by AllAboutTopnews

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