Cruise, a robotaxi company backed by General Motors, has recently received a milestone permit to offer commercial autonomous driving ride-hailing services in San Francisco. One day after the license was issued, a Cruise vehicle operating autonomously was involved in a crash at the intersection of Geary Boulevard and Spruce Street in San Francisco. The Cruise vehicle made a left turn in front of an oncoming Toyota Prius, which led to a crash that injured the occupants of both cars.
In a report filed with the California Department of Motor Vehicles, Cruise said its self-driving vehicle stopped in the roadway before completing its left turn and was stationary when struck. According to Cruise, the other car’s driver was to blame, as they were speeding and the Prius had continued straight from a right-turn lane. Unfortunately, the details could not be independently verified.
A spokesperson for the San Francisco Police Department could not find an incident report related to the crash Wednesday and said it was possible no report was generated. Approached by Automotive News, a Cruise spokesperson declined Wednesday to say why the AV stopped before completing its turn. Many questions remained unanswered, though, so it’s impossible to say for sure who was to blame for the crash.
Cruise is no stranger to accidents and incidents, despite Tesla taking all the limelight regarding self-driving crashes. According to an NHTSA report, Cruise vehicles were involved in 23 crashes from July 2021 to May 15, 2022. In April, one of the company’s autonomous vehicles blocked the path of a San Francisco Fire Department truck en route to a blaze.
The same month, a police officer pulled over a Cruise vehicle because it was operating without headlights on at night. The car then repositioned itself before the traffic stop was complete. And only a week ago, dozens of Cruise vehicles clustered at a city intersection, blocking the traffic for hours.