Police in Tempe, Arizona, are investigating a fatal crash involving an autonomous Uber vehicle, according to a report from ABC15.
The report claims Uber’s self-driving car was in autonomous mode when it hit a woman early Monday morning. She was walking in the street outside designated crosswalks, and later died from her injuries at a local hospital.
According to ABC15, an Uber spokesperson told the station the company is aware of the incident and is cooperating with the investigation. Uber also issued the following statement to TechCrunch: “Our hearts go out to the victim’s family. We are fully cooperating with local authorities in their investigation of this incident.”
The New York Times reports that Uber is suspending autonomous vehicle testing in Tempe, Pittsburgh, San Francisco, and Toronto.
Though this isn’t the first accident to involve an autonomous vehicle, Uber’s self-driving car may be the first to kill a pedestrian.
More incidents like these might erode the public’s hard-won trust in the vehicles, and may slow their widespread adoption. That may ultimately be bad news, because experts believe that autonomous cars will save lives by eliminating the cause of 94 percent of traffic accidents: human error.