Uber’s Autonomous Driving Program to Shut Down in Arizona Following Fatal Crash
Following a deadly autonomous car crash in March, Uber plans to end its driverless car program in the Phoenix, Ariz. suburb of Tempe and terminated 300 test drivers there on Wednesday, the Arizona Republic reports.
On March 18, an Uber self-driving car struck and killed 49-year-old Elaine Herzberg, who is believed to be the first person to die because of an autonomous vehicle. Herzberg was reportedly outside of a crosswalk when the Uber self-driving vehicle hit her.
According to a report by tech news site The Information, Uber reportedly knows why its driverless technology didn’t prevent the car from hitting Herzberg. It was essentially a matter of fine tuning, and the car decided “it didn’t need to react right away,” according to The Information.
An operator was behind the wheel of the car at the time, police told Fortune, but a dashboard cam video released by authorities shows the driver was looking away from the road until seconds before the accident took place.
Uber plans to resume its self-driving program in Pittsburgh after a federal investigation into the crash in Arizona is completed. The company is working with the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) to investigate the incident further.