This latest Cruise robot car outage happened at the intersection of Van Ness Ave. and Turk St.
Six months into GM’s Cruise operating, picking up and dropping off passengers in San Francisco sans driver, the autonomous car company’s been dogged with constant reports of its cars just stopping, clogging SF streets.
Here’s another incident to add to Cruise’s list of stranded Bolt EV cars, as according to Twitter user Kelly Pendergrast, who goes by @K_pendergrast on the bird app, she spotted a Cruise car stopped at the intersection of Van Ness Ave. and Turk St earlier yesterday at 10 P.M. for reportedly 13 minutes before a Cruise employee was deployed to rescue the stuck car.
Check out Pendergrast’s video below.
Omg highlight of my weekend – watching a malfunctioning self driving car in the wild, stuck at a green light for multiple light cycles already @Cruise come get ur boy pic.twitter.com/PfcgGbA56D— kelly p. (@k_pendergrast) December 4, 2022
In the video, we can see the Cruise Bolt EV stopped next to some collapsible traffic delineators.
Here’s the exact location on Google Maps and, as you can see viewing street view, the cruise car is not stuck on any kind of complicated turn lane, cars can only go straight.
Cars stuck behind Cruise car opt to slip into the dedicated bus lane on the left, several honking to, perhaps unbeknownst to them, no one in particular.
At one point a Waymo car with driver behind the wheel pulls up behind the Cruise Car but, since there’s an actual human on-board, Waymo’s on-board operator presumably decides to override the driverless function to steer clear of the stuck Cruise Car.
Now a self-driving but accompanied Waymo has pulled up behind it, absolute chaos pic.twitter.com/KenpQ7b2Jw— kelly p. (@k_pendergrast) December 4, 2022
Finally, reportedly 13 minutes after Pendergrast first spotted the stranded Cruise Car, a tech shows up to “free” the Bolt EV from its stuck position.
As reported by Engadget, since June, Cruise is permitted to operate up to 30 driverless Bolts between the hours of 10 PM and 6 AM on a set number of routes in San Francisco.
Since operating autonomously per the stipulations, as mentioned, numerous reports about stuck Cruise cars have been shared on social media and subsequently reported on.
Not even a month after being given the green light, a “swarm” of Cruise cars were spotted stopped at an intersection for a couple of hours.
Apparently a bunch of driverless Cruise vehicles were "stuck" blocking an intersection for "a couple of hours" the other night, according to a redditor who posted these images. No word on what the issue might have been. https://t.co/EenuqbjTsD pic.twitter.com/WkPQCF1SjL— E.W. Niedermeyer (@Tweetermeyer) June 30, 2022
In July, Wired reported on three separate incidents of stuck Cruise Cars.
And in September, two Cruise cars were spotted on Sacramento and Leavenworth blocking traffic, that eyewitness video posted to Reddit.
In Wire’s report, an anonymous Cruise employee sent a letter to the California Public Utilities Commission alleging “…that the company (Cruise) loses contact with its driverless vehicles “with regularity,” blocking traffic and potentially hindering emergency vehicles.”
It appears that’s what happened with the Cruise car on Van Ness and Turk.
It’s clear Cruise still has bugs to work out, and this will hardly be the last time I come across another incident of a stuck, driverless Bolt EV in San Francisco.
It seems to be not a matter of if, but when.