General Motors’ self-driving unit Cruise said it recalled 80 vehicles by updating software after a crash in June that left two injured.
In June, Cruise became the first company in San Francisco to receive a permit to offer driverless rides in a small portion of the city.
However, one of its vehicles was involved in an accident the very same month, which ultimately led to the NHTSA recalling the software. The agency said that the Cruise software could “indirectly predict” an oncoming vehicle’s path, noting the software could “in certain circumstances when making an unprotected left, cause the (autonomous driving system) to incorrectly predict another vehicle’s path or be insufficiently reactive to the sudden path change of a road user.”
Cruise issued the software update on July 6.
Cruise said today that, after the crash, which occurred on June 3, it removed its vehicles’ ability to make unprotected left turns. It also reduced the area of operation, which was already small, and avoids downtown traffic and routes. The fleet vehicles were limited to a top speed of 30 MPH and were only allowed to operate between 10 PM and 6 AM.
“Cruise AVs are even better equipped to prevent this singular, exceptional event,” the company said, according to Reuters. The company added that the recall “does not impact or change our current on-road operations.”
The NHTSA opened a special investigation into the Cruise accident last month.
Cruise stated that its vehicles will hard brake while performing unprotected left turns in order to avoid severe front-end collisions, but only in extremely seldom instances. Additionally, the vehicle involved in the accident “had to decide between two different risk scenarios and chose the one with the least potential for a serious collision at the time, before the oncoming vehicle’s sudden change of direction.”
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