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Uber's self-driving car fatality draws national scrutiny

Local and federal investigators continue to examine the circumstances surrounding the fatal ...

Posted: Mar 21, 2018 10:43 AM
Updated: Mar 21, 2018 10:43 AM

Local and federal investigators continue to examine the circumstances surrounding the fatal Sunday night crash involving a self-driving vehicle in Tempe, Arizona.

An Uber SUV operating in autonomous mode was traveling at about 40 mph when it struck and killed a woman walking a bicycle across a road late Sunday.

Tempe's police department released a statement late Tuesday afternoon updating progress on the investigation. Authorities indicated Uber is cooperating with the probe, which involves the National Transportation Safety Board and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

The vehicle involved in the crash, a Volvo XC90 SUV, has been examined, and data from it collected. Investigators also reviewed footage of the crash that was captured by a dash cam mounted in the Volvo.

It's unclear when local and federal investigations will conclude their investigation. After Tempe detectives complete their probe, it will be submitted to the Maricopa County Attorney's Office to decide if criminal charges are warranted.

According Chris Zachar, a personal injury attorney with 25 years experience in Arizona, typically criminal charges aren't made in the state unless something especially egregious happens, such as a driver under the influence.

Related: What you need to know about the Uber crash

The ripples from the Uber fatality are being felt elsewhere in the self-driving vehicle industry. The Boston Department of Transportation asked autonomous vehicle companies testing in the city to pause operations. Officials will be reviewing safety procedures at each company.

In February, the Governors Highway Safety Association estimated that 6,000 pedestrians were killed in motor vehicle crashes in 2017, indicating a continued uptick in pedestrian deaths not seen in 25 years. Experts have pointed to the popularity of smartphones as a possible culprit.

"We've had one fatality that's directly the result of an autonomous car hitting a pedestrian," Karl-Brauer, an analyst with Kelley Blue Book told CNN. "The autonomous car fatality rate is still far superior to a non-autonomous car fatality rate on death per mile. That's important to keep in mind. it's much easier to say, 'Damn the computers, they're going to kill us all.'"

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

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Reported Deaths: 7297
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Hennepin1211481718
Ramsey50494868
Dakota45177443
Anoka40908433
Washington26429279
Stearns21950221
St. Louis17568302
Scott17036124
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Sherburne1144384
Carver1035045
Clay809292
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Morrison414560
Isanti410762
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Lyon357850
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Pine324121
Nicollet321443
Brown303540
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Todd278731
Cass266328
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Martin228831
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Unassigned49793
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Iowa Coronavirus Cases

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Cases: 364967

Reported Deaths: 5920
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk57277621
Linn20729334
Scott19808240
Black Hawk15757308
Woodbury15091228
Johnson1441183
Dubuque13326209
Dallas1111198
Pottawattamie11043168
Story1054948
Warren573688
Clinton552092
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Sioux512874
Webster510993
Marshall481075
Muscatine474699
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Jasper413771
Plymouth400179
Lee373155
Marion360575
Jones296957
Henry290737
Carroll284752
Bremer282860
Crawford265840
Boone262734
Benton255055
Washington253350
Dickinson247543
Mahaska229351
Jackson220942
Kossuth215164
Clay214725
Tama208971
Delaware208240
Winneshiek196733
Page192222
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Clayton169156
Butler164234
Mills161422
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