Home >Uber suspends self-driving car tests after fatal crash in Arizona

Uber suspends self-driving car tests after fatal crash in Arizona

20 March 2018

An autonomous Uber car has killed a female pedestrian in a street in Arizona in what is believed to be the first fatal incident involving a self-driving vehicle and a pedestrian.

The autonomous car operated by Uber and with an emergency backup driver behind the wheel hit a woman who was walking outside of the crosswalk at around 10pm on Sunday evening. The woman later died in hospital.
In a statement on Twitter Uber said: “Our hearts go out to the victim’s family. We are fully cooperating with local authorities in their investigation of this incident.”
Following the incident the company quickly suspended testing in Tempe as well as in Pittsburgh, San Francisco and Toronto.

According to The Guardian police identified the victim as 49-year-old Elaine Herzberg and said she was walking outside of the crosswalk with a bicycle when she was hit. The 2017 Volvo SUV was traveling at roughly 40 miles an hour, and it did not appear that the car slowed down as it approached the woman, said Tempe sergeant Ronald Elcock.

Elcock said he had watched footage of the collision, which has not been released to the public. He also identified the operator of the car as Rafael Vasquez, 44, and said he was cooperative and there were no signs of impairment.