Apple’s first self-driving car crash occurred due to a human error

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The car in question was a Lexus RX450h SUV equipped with Apple’s sensors and hardware, and it was traveling at less than 1mph when it was rear-ended by a human-driven Nissan Leaf traveling at 15mph. No one was hurt, but both cars sustained minor damages. After investigation, the accident was attributed to human error. The vehicle was “waiting for a safe gap to complete the merge” when it was struck, the report filed with the California Department of Motor Vehicles said. In fact, it was proved once again at the same time  that  the cars’ AI is more cautious than humans and this may generate a driving behavior capable to be a problem for other traffic partners.

Apple-self-driving-car
Apple’s self driving car

Self-driving cars are programmed to be more cautious than human-driven ones. There is some data that shows self-driving cars are safer for passengers than human-operated cars. When speaking to Consumer Reports, Phil Koopman, a software engineer at Carnegie Mellon, suggested that part of the reason for the accidents may be that the autonomous cars do a poor job imitating human drivers. There is something to change. Apple currently has dozens of self-driving cars on the road and  it’s confirmed that the company has partnered with Volkswagen to transform the Volkswagen’s T6 vans into self-driving shuttles for Apple employees at their Cupertino campus. Several companies are optimistic that we will see autonomous cars on the roads within the next few years.

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