Sensors on an Uber SUV being tested in Tempe detected the womanhood, who was crossing a street at night outside a crossing, finally concluding “ an emergency braking maneuver was needed to mitigate a collision, ” the National Transportation Safety Board said in a preliminary report released May 24 .
But the system couldn ’ thymine activate the brakes, the NTSB said .
“ According to Uber, hand brake braking maneuvers are not enabled while the vehicle is under computer master, to reduce the electric potential for erratic vehicle demeanor, ” investigators said .
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The province for hitting the brake was left with a safety driver, who sits behind the bicycle monitoring the autonomous screen fomite. even though Uber ’ s computers concluded the car would hit the pedestrian 1.3 seconds before impact, or about 82 feet away, it besides didn ’ thyroxine alert the driver and she was looking away from the road at the clock time, according to NTSB .
The NTSB ’ s preliminary composition raises multiple questions about the ship’s company ’ sulfur autonomous system ampere well as the actions of the safety driver and the pedestrian felled in the crash. The pedestrian had drugs in her system and didn ’ triiodothyronine look for traffic, according to the NTSB. The report does not establish what caused the collision .
The Volvo XC90 SUV was besides equipped with a distinguish specify of sensors that could activate an automated brake system, which the company calls City Safety. It is besides capable of detecting driver awareness. however, the systems were disabled whenever the SUV was being operated in self-driving mode, according to NTSB .
“ That seems like a serious blueprint omission, ” said Bryant Walker Smith, a professor at the University of South Carolina ’ sulfur School of Law who studies autonomous vehicle regulations. “ I can understand disabling Volvo ’ south systems, but it sounds like a set of tasks were placed on a individual guard driver. ”
The crash has been a closely determine bellwether for the condom of autonomous cars in development and being tested on streets in multiple states. Uber permanently shut down its self- drive testing in Arizona May 23, before the handout of the NTSB ’ mho findings .
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Uber has initiated its own condom review of the caller ’ s self-driving vehicles, the company said in an e-mail instruction .
It besides hired a erstwhile chair of the NTSB to advise it on its condom culture, the company said. “ We look forward to sharing more on the changes we ’ ll make in the come weeks, ” the party said in the statement .
The Tempe Police Department completed its probe of the doss and referred it to Maricopa County prosecutors for inspection, police said in a statement issued May 23. information from the probe would be released by the county lawyer ’ sulfur position following its inspection, patrol said .
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The Uber car ’ south radar and lidar sensors observed the pedestrian about six seconds before impact. Elaine Herzberg, 49, who was walking her bicycle across the street, was identified by the sensors first as an stranger object, then as a fomite and then as a bicycle, the NTSB said .
The organization was operating as designed and concluded it was going to hit something 1.3 seconds before the crash. It hit Herzberg while traveling at 39 miles an hour. The driver, who engaged the steering rack less than a second before the impingement, didn ’ metric ton hit the brakes until subsequently .
“ The vehicle hustler is relied on to intervene and take action, ” the NTSB wrote in the report. “ The system is not designed to alert the operator. ”
The operator was looking away from the road for long stretches in the prison term before the crash, according to an inner video showing her that was released by patrol. She told investigators she was monitoring the self-driving system ’ s interface .
While the Uber base hit drivers are responsible for monitoring the car ’ sulfur drive and stopping for pedestrians and other obstructions, they must besides monitor the car ’ s computers and keep logs of events, the NTSB said .
The driver ’ s personal and function mobile devices weren ’ t in use at the time of the crash, she said. The driver wasn ’ thyroxine tested for drugs or alcohol, but police said she showed no signs of stultification .
Herzberg was wearing dark dress and her bicycle didn ’ metric ton have reflectors that would have been visible from the side, NTSB said. She crossed the street in an area “ not directly illuminated by the roadway lighting, ” the report said. even, she was visible in versatile video images recorded by the cable car ’ second cameras, according to NTSB.
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She entered the roadway from a median that had four signs warning pedestrians to use a crossing located 360 feet north of where the crash occurred and only looked at the car precisely before the shock .
toxicology tests showed she had taken methamphetamine and cannabis, though the NTSB didn ’ thymine conclude how intoxicated she may have been .
Herzberg ’ s kin settled legal claims with Uber shortly after the accident, according to an electronic mail from their lawyer. The kin didn ’ metric ton disclose terms of the settlement .