Google’s self-driving cars may be the way of the future, but riding in one — or being on the road near one — is not without its risks.
The Associated Press released footage Wednesday from inside a Mountain View, California, public transit bus that was sideswiped by a Google self-driving car, a Lexus RX SUV, in February. This incident was the first time one of the tech company’s self-driving vehicles has been responsible for an accident.
In the video clip, viewers can see the white SUV through the window of the bus as it swipes the side of the public transit shuttle. Moments later, the surprised bus driver stops and gets out to assess the damage.
As to why the accident occurred, Google said the vehicle “predicted that [the bus] would yield to us because we were ahead of it.”
“Unfortunately, all these assumptions led us to the same spot in the lane at the same time,” Google said in a statement. “This type of misunderstanding happens between human drivers on the road every day.”
The accident happened while the vehicles were moving at low speeds — The bus was only traveling at 15 mph, the Google car at 2 mph.
As self-driving technology continues to advance and car manufacturers continue to test their technology out on the open road, it stands to reason that these types of crashes will not be that uncommon. Regardless of how advanced the science becomes, the vehicles will always have to make some predictions.
And, when working alongside human beings, sometimes those predictions will be wrong.
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