© 2022 90.5 WESA
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Uber Resumes Autonomous Car Testing On Pittsburgh Streets, Three Days After AZ Crash

Margaret Sun
90.5 WESA

*This story was updated at 2:55 p.m. March 27, 2017
Uber's self-driving cars will be back in operation Monday afternoon three days after the company announced it had pulled the cars off the street. 

An Uber spokesperson said the company felt confident returning the cars to the road in three test cities, including Pittsburgh. Testing in San Francisco resumed Monday morning and the spokesperson said rides will resume in Tempe Monday afternoon, as well. 

The company paused development operations and passenger pilot rides in the autonomous vehicles after a Friday crash in Tempe, Ariz. involving an SUV in self-driving mode. 

An Uber spokesperson said the Uber SUV was struck by another vehicle making a left turn at an intersection in Tempe where the company has been testing its self-driving cars since Feb. 21.

No one was seriously injured. Police in Tempe said the Uber rolled over onto its side as a result of the collision.

Police said the self-driving SUV was obeying the law and the driver in the other car who didn't yield was cited for a moving violation after the Friday night crash.

An Uber spokesperson said there were no passengers in the self-driving Volvo SUV at the time of the crash but there were two operators in the front. The spokesperson said as the investigation continues, it has grounded self-driving fleets in San Francisco, Tempe and Pittsburgh. The spokesperson did not know when the cars would start driving again.

The company released 14 self-driving Ford Fusions in September at the Advanced Technologies Center in the Strip District. The cars are, for now, accompanied by two Uber employees called "safety drivers.”  

Ford has also announced a $1 billion investment in Pittsburgh-based company, Argo AI to develop a similar system. Argo was developed by two former Uber engineers. The partners announced it hopes to launch by 2021.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

Sarah Schneider is WESA's education reporter. From early learning to higher education, Sarah is interested in students and educators working to create more equitable systems. Sarah previously worked with news outlets in Pennsylvania, Illinois and Idaho. She is a graduate of Southern Illinois University Carbondale where she worked for the school newspaper, the Daily Egyptian.
WESA will be surveying Pennsylvania candidates for federal and state office for the 2022 general election — tell us which issues are most important to you.