Uber to Stop Testing Self-Driving Vehicles Following Fatal Crash

Following the fatal crash in Arizona involving a self-driving vehicle, Uber has announced that it will stop testing autonomous vehicles on California public roads.

On Saturday, ridesharing company Uber chose to allow its California state permit to expire without renewing it, meaning that the company will no longer be allowed to test self-driving vehicles on California public roads, the Hollywood Reporter reports. Should the ride-hailing service choose to resume testing in the state, it will have to get a new permit and address any investigations into a crash involving one of its autonomous test SUVs in Arizona that killed a pedestrian.

“Any application for a new permit will need to address any follow-up analysis or investigations from the recent crash in Arizona and may also require a meeting with the department," said the letter from DMV Deputy Director Brian Soublet.

Along with California, Uber will no longer be testing its self-driving vehicles in Arizona with Gov. Doug Ducey having suspended the company’s self-driving vehicle testing privileges on Monday.

The suspension and the expiration of the permit comes in the wake of a fatal crash in Tempe, Arizona in which 49-year-old Elaine Herzberg died after being hit by a self-driving car operated by Uber. The Uber vehicle was in autonomous mode with a human driver at the wheel when it struck the woman who was crossing the street outside of a crosswalk.

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Following the incident, the ride-share giant announced that it would be pausing self-driving car tests in all locations after the deadly accident. Last year, Uber suspended the same program after a different Arizona crash which did not result in any serious injuries.

While Uber will no longer be testing self-driving vehicles in California, which was considered a small testing ground with only 29 vehicles permitted, and Arizona, the company is still allowed to test on public roads in Pennsylvania and Ontario.