Google’s self-driving prototypes have been much debated because of the accidents in which they were involved. This made the cars unreliable in front of the customers. So the company has finally decided to release monthly reports on the performance of the autonomous vehicles.
So far Google’s cars were involved in 12 accidents. No injuries were reported and the company said that the accidents were minor. On Friday the company has once again declared that the accidents were not caused by the self-driving cars, but by the second car involved in the accident. In only once instance the prototypes were to blame and the accident which happened in August 2011 had been previously disclosed. However the car was controlled by the driver. An employee used the self-driving vehicle to run an errand and ended up rear-ending a car which was stopped in traffic.
The latest report was released on June 05. The new reports keep track of data points, the accidents in which the cars were involved and the project’s activity. The most recent accident occurred on Thursday when a self-driving car in Mountain View California rear-ended at a stoplight.
In the report done for the month of May the company declared:
“We’ve made a lot of progress with our self-driving technology over the past six years, and we’re still learning. Every day we head out onto public streets so we can keep challenging and refining our software.”
The commitment to publish monthly reports with information about the performance of the cars has come after Consumer Watchdog pressured the company to offer detailed information about the accidents which were filed with the California Department of Motor Vehicles.
According to Google six of the accidents happened when the vehicle was in autonomous driving mode, while the other ones took place when the driver was controlling the car. The report says that when the self-driving vehicle detected the other car it automatically applied the brakes. Afterwards the driver took manual control.
The tech giant is also using its website to explain how this new technology works, gather data and provide information. Google says that robotic cars could help diminish the number of deaths caused by human drivers. The company intends to support this idea with examples. At a shareholder meeting which took place on June 3 co-founder Sergey Brin declared that he is proud of the record which their cars registered and that their goal is to beat human drivers using self-driving cars.
Image Source: Telematics Wire