It was not a day of love between Google’s self-driving car and a public transit bus on Valentine’s Day 2016. On that day, Google’s self-driving Lexus SUV was responsible for causing a crash in California. Now, surveillance video obtained by the Associated Press (AP) showing the crash has been released.
“It was the first time in several years of testing on public roads that a Google self-driving car prototype caused a crash,” according to the AP. “Google has blamed other drivers for past collisions during testing, but, in a first, accepted at least partial responsibility for this crash.”
According to the accident report, the Google vehicle was traveling in the far right-hand lane on El Camino Real in Mountain View, Calif. The car signaled to make a turn onto Castro Street while waiting at a red light.
The car “moved to the right-hand side of the lane to pass traffic in the same lane that was stopped at the intersection and proceeding straight,” according to the report. “However, the Google (autonomous vehicle) had to come to a stop and go around sandbags positioned around a storm drain that were blocking its path.”
When the light turned green, the car waited to re-enter the lane as a few cars passed. The car tried to enter the lane as a bus approached from behind. The bus, traveling around 15 mph, did not allow the Google car to enter the lane. The Google car sideswiped the bus while going less than 2 mph.
The Google car required towing after the collision, as the impact crumpled the car’s left front side, flattened the tire, and removed one of its radar sensors.
No people were injured in the collision.