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Driverless Shuttle Involved in Accident Mere Hours After it Launches
10 November 2017, 12:27 | Tara Lloyd
A self-driving bus debuted in downtown Las Vegas on Nov. 8 2017
Over the course of a year, the self-driving shuttle aims at providing a quarter-million residents and visitors of Las Vegas with first-hand experience using autonomous vehicle (AV) technology, exposing most riders to the technology for the first time.
Two hours after it was launched to much fanfare, a driverless, autonomous shuttle was bumped into by a human-driven delivery truck in Las Vegas.
There were no injuries reported, and the shuttle didn't suffer any major damage, according to a report by a local Fox news station. No one was hurt, and the truck was cited for illegal backing, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal. Unfortunately the delivery truck did not stop and grazed the front fender of the shuttle.
Supporters of self-driving cars argue that they will reduce traffic accidents because they remove human error. So far, the driverless shuttles are doing better than the drivers of trucks.
"We were all like, 'Oh my gosh, he's going to hit us, he's going to hit us, ' and then, BAM!" she said.
The accident is believed to be the fault of a human truck driver who emerged from a side alley and failed to stop his vehicle. The bus has an attendant and computer monitor but no steering wheel or brake pedals.
The eight-seater vehicle, started as a pilot of Las Vegas' smart city infrastructure, experienced a minor collision after a delivery lorry reversed into it.
"We're seeing a change in technology that's fundamentally changing how people view transportation-it's changing mobility, and it's changing cars", says John Moreno, AAA's manager of public affairs. The shuttle is the country's first autonomous shuttle to be fully integrated with "smart-city" infrastructure, communicating with traffic signals to improve safety and traffic flow. Back in September, Navya and transport company Keolis tested a self-driving bus in east London.
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