For a few years now, Google has been hard at work at looking to define the automotive industry. While Android Auto looks to change how we interact with our cars today, Google has another team set up with the task of designed the car of tomorrow. As a lot of your probably already know, Google has been working on crafting self-driving cars for the past few years. For just about 2 years now, Google has been working with current cars and adding technology to them to make them self-driving vehicles. Just a couple of months ago, Google showed off a brand new prototype that they designed for their self-driving technology. The car caused quite a bit of commotion when the YouTube promo for it went live, and has still been drawing quite a bit of attention to this whole idea of self-driving cars. Google is still in the process of testing out these smart cars (Google Street View Cars) before talking about plans for a public release. However, it looks like that unannounced public release might get pushed back a bit from where it already was, as a new accident has been reported that was caused by a Google Street View car.
The accident took place in Arkansas. The ‘driver’ inside of the car was taking it for a spin through Tyler Street in Little Rock recently, but things didn’t go that smoothly. During this drive, the Street View car decided to go down a one-way street in the wrong direction, make a U-turn and then proceeded to hit another car. The crash cost the Google-driver $1,500 in damages, while the other driver who was hit is now facing damages up to $2,000. The driver who was hit reported that the Google-driver “basically said he was sorry and that he was gonna lose his job.” Although this is not the first report of a Street View-caused car accident, it does make things a bit more difficult for Google now.
Prior to this incident, Google has been facing some debate from the FBI regarding their self-driving cars. The United States’ Federal Bureau of Intelligence is a bit hesitant with the whole idea of self-driving cars. The FBI has said that they fear terrorists will take advantage of the self-driving cars to make them mobile transportation for bombs and other tools of destruction. Having another accident with a Street View car certainly does not help Google at all with this battle they’ve been facing to get these self-driving cars to market. It’s currently unknown as to why this most recent crash took place. So far, it’s guessed that it was most likely a glitch in the Google Maps technology which powers these cars.
We’re still a few good years away before we see self-driving cars pop up on the market for civilian use. It’s now obvious that Google still has some kincks to work out before mass producing these things. And a kinck in a car is much different from a kinck in a smartphone or search engine. With a car, it can be a matter of life or death.