Auto Regulator NHTSA Pulls Up Alphabet's Waymo After Spotting 9 More 'Unexpected Driving Behavior' Reports


U.S. auto safety regulator NHTSA has identified nine more reports of “unexpected driving behavior” in certain vehicles equipped with Waymo‘s fifth-generation automated driving system (ADS).

What Happened: The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration commenced a preliminary evaluation into Alphabet Inc's GOOG GOOGL Waymo self-driving vehicles earlier this month following 22 reports of unexpected driving behaviors.

However, the regulator has identified nine more similar reports since it opened the investigation, it said in an email to Waymo dated May 23.

These reports include collisions with stationary and semi-stationery objects such as gates and chains, as well as collisions with other parked vehicles. Some instances pertain to the driving system disobeying traffic rules.

The regulator expressed concern that these driving behaviors may increase the risks of crash and injury. “Although this office is unaware of injury allegations, several of the incidents involved collisions with clearly visible objects that a competent driver would be expected to avoid,” the regulator wrote.

Why It Matters: The regulator has sought information from Waymo including video footage and explanations of the system’s decision-making in each of the reports it identified by June 11 in the letter.

Waymo currently operates robotaxis in parts of San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Phoenix. The company intends to expand services to Austin soon.

Earlier this month, the NHTSA also commenced an investigation into‘s automated Zoox vehicles, owing to concerns about its sudden braking leading to collisions.

Check out more of Benzinga’s Future Of Mobility coverage by following this link.

Read More: Is Tesla’s Delivery Drought Over? Beijing Center Rumored To Have Hit Record Day

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