GM’s Cruise pause of all driverless operations

London, 08 November 2023, (Oilandgaspress) – We believe that over time autonomous vehicles can significantly reduce the number and severity of car collisions, including the more than 40,000 deaths on U.S. roads each year. This is what motivates our work. We also know we have a responsibility to operate at the highest standards of safety, transparency and accountability.

We recently announced a pause of all our driverless operations while we take time to examine our processes, systems, and tools and improve how we operate. During this time we plan to seek input from our government and agency partners and other key stakeholders to understand how we can be better partners.

Today we are sharing updates on some of the initial steps we have taken.

Issued a Voluntary Software Recall

As part of our larger efforts to assess, identify and remedy issues as we work with NHTSA and other regulators, we have issued a voluntary recall of part of our AV software based on a new analysis of our AV’s post-collision response on October 2. The recall addresses circumstances in which the Cruise collision detection subsystem may cause the Cruise AV to attempt to pull over out of traffic instead of remaining stationary when a pullover is not the desired post-collision response.

We issued the recall through a 573 NHTSA filing, which is the standard protocol for a company looking to notify consumers of hardware or software safety issues that require a remedy. We have also developed a software update that remedies the issue described and have deployed it to our supervised test fleet, which remains in operation. We’ll deploy the remedy to our driverless fleet prior to resuming those operations.

Although we determined that a similar collision with a risk of serious injury could have recurred every 10 million – 100 million miles of driving on average prior to the software update, we strive to continually improve and to make these events even rarer. As our software improves, it is likely we will file additional recalls to inform both NHTSA and the public of updates to enhance safety across our fleet.

Announced a Chief Safety Officer (CSO) Role

Cruise is conducting a search to hire a Chief Safety Officer who will report directly to the CEO. In the meantime, Dr. Louise Zhang, VP of Safety & Systems, will assume the role of Interim Chief Safety Officer and oversee our safety review & investigations.

Retained Third-Party Law Firm to Review October Incident

The Cruise Board retained law firm Quinn Emanuel to examine and better understand Cruise’s response to the October 2 incident, including Cruise’s interactions with law enforcement, regulators, and the media. This outside review will help us learn from this incident, strengthen our protocols, and improve our response to these types of incidents in the future.

Appointed Exponent to Conduct Technical Root Cause Analysis

In addition to our cooperation with investigations from the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), we have hired an independent, third-party engineering firm to perform a technical root cause analysis of the October 2 incident. We will incorporate their findings into our safety and engineering processes.

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