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Cruise Looks To Relaunch Robotaxi in Texas After San Francisco Controversy

  • Cruise executives are in discussions with officials in Houston and Dallas, among other metro areas, about relaunching robotaxi testing with safety drivers on public roads.
  • The decision on which metro areas to restart operations in has yet to be made, and Cruise aims to rebuild trust with regulators and the public before deployment.
  • Cruise's suspension followed a pedestrian accident in San Francisco, leading to regulatory scrutiny, license revocation, executive changes, and layoffs, while other self-driving cars faced attacks in the area.

General Motors Co.'s Cruise autonomous driving unit is preparing to resume robotaxi testing with safety drivers in Houston and Dallas metro areas in the coming weeks, following the nationwide grounding after one of its robotaxis ran over a pedestrian in San Francisco in October, according to Bloomberg News

People familiar with the conversations say Cruise executives and officials in several metro areas, including the two Texas cities, are discussing the return of the robotaxi with safety drivers on public roads. Before the accident last year, the company had hundreds of robotaxi operating across San Fran, Austin, Houston, and Phoenix. 

"We have not set a timeline for deployment," Cruise spokesman Pat Morrissey wrote in a statement. 

Morrissey continued: "Our goal is to relaunch in one city with manually driven vehicles and supervised testing as soon as possible once we have taken steps to rebuild trust with regulators and the public. We are in the process of meeting with officials in select markets to gather information, share updates and rebuild trust."

Cruise's collapse in public trust came last October when one of its robotaxi dragged a pedestrian in San Francisco. 

This sparked claims by regulators that Cruise execs withheld key footage and details about the incident.

And the fallout resulted in California pulling Cruise's license to operate the taxis. The company also fired top executives and laid off 25% of its workforce. A new chief safety officer was recently brought on board. 

The people added Cruise's decision on which metro areas to restart robotaxi operations has yet to be made. 

Meanwhile, crowds in downtown San Fran destroyed a Waymo self-driving car earlier this month. 

This comes after several attacks on self-driving cars in the metro area.


By Zerohedge.com

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