Uber Halts Self-Driving Car Tests After Arizona Crash

Mar 27, 2017 10:46 AM EDT | Yen Palec

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Ride-hailing giant Uber recently announced that it is temporarily halting the test of its self-driving Volvo SUVs after one unit was involved in a crash. Reports revealed that the Uber car was in self-driving mode when the crash occurred. Photos of the crash were posted online showing the Uber car on its right side, while another vehicle was badly damaged.

A spokesperson for the Tempe, Arizona police department said that the crash occurred when one vehicle did not yield to the Uber car when doing a left turn. The police department added that no injuries were reported and that their initial investigation revealed it was the fault of the other car.

One of the photos posted on several social media platform shows the Uber car on its side. This led many to believe that it appears to be a high-impact crash. Google's self-driving car division Waymo has had a handful of accidents on private roads but most of which are minor incidents, according to Bloomberg.

In a statement released to the public, Uber spokeswoman Josie Montenegro said, "There was a person behind the wheel. It is uncertain at this time if they were controlling the vehicle at the time of the collision."

Uber started fielding self-driving test cars in Pittsburgh last year. The company later expanded its test site to Arizona after its attempt to field self-driving cars in San Francisco was botched by the California Department of Motor Vehicles.

The recent incident came is as Uber is facing a lot of heat regarding company labor practices. Several stories about workplace ethics and employee mistreatment have been circulating on several social media platforms and news portals. In recent weeks, a handful of Uber executives, including President Jeff Jones, have left the company.

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