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12th Apr 2022

Cop pulls over driverless car – but it speeds off when he tries to open the door

April Curtin

A driverless transport self-driving automobile from General Motor's Cruise division drives through traffic in the Mission Bay neighborhood of San Francisco, California, May 21, 2019. (Photo by Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images)

The Cruise company said the driverless car acted how it was supposed to

Police officers in San Francisco got a shock when they tried to pull over a car to find nobody in the driver’s seat.

A video posted earlier this month showed the incident in which cops stopped the vehicle created by self-driving taxi service Cruise.

“Ain’t nobody in it,” a bystander can be heard saying, “this is crazy.”

Footage shows the officer peering into the car door and trying to open it. After failing to do so, the cop walks away from the vehicle, only for it to cruise off down the road.

Driverless car in San Fran drives off on its own after police inspection

The vehicle stops again and puts its hazard lights on before the police car comes rushing up behind – with members of the public laughing and joking while watching from the pavement.

The video went viral and unsurprisingly got a huge reaction.

“Welcome to the future,” one Twitter user said.

A spokesperson for Cruise confirmed that the San Francisco Police Department pulled over the vehicle for not having its headlights on, but said the vehicle actions were “intended”.

Cruise said: “Our AV yielded to the police vehicle, then pulled over to the nearest safe location for the traffic stop, as intended. An officer contacted Cruise personnel and no citation was issued.

“We work closely with the SFPD on how to interact with our vehicles, including a dedicated phone number for them to call in situations like this.”

The company has been testing vehicles with a backup driver in the front since 2015. But it was only in November last year that the vehicles were free to start going driverless around San Francisco.

Waymo, another autonomous car company, has recently announced it will deploy driverless vehicles around San Fran on a trial basis. But as The Guardian reports, interested riders first have to apply for a waitlist… and sign a non-disclosure agreement.

Nuro is another company that has a permit for driverless cars in the city but is using it for self-driving delivery services, which it is already going in Mountain View, California.

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