Google has confirmed that one of its self-driving vehicles sustained significant damage in a traffic accident involving a commercial van on Friday, September 23.
The collision took place at the corner of W El Camino Real and Calderon Ave in Mountain View, California, when the driver of the van ran a red light and struck the passenger side of Google’s Lexus RX 450 SUV.
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The car was operating in its autonomous mode at the time of the crash, but that didn’t stop the human driver from slamming on the breaks when he spotted the oncoming van. Unfortunately, his reaction was a little too slow.
The good news, however, is that no one sustained any injuries during the incident. Although, understandably the Google employee in the heavily modified RX 450 was visibly shaken.
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It’s worth noting that this isn’t the first time that one of Google’s autonomous vehicles have been caught up in a traffic accident.
Earlier this year, a Google-branded self-driving car was involved in its first and only at-fault accident when it hit a public transit bus while attempting to navigate around a sandbag in the middle of the road.
This latest incident wasn’t the autonomous car’s fault, though. In a statement issued to 9to5Google, the company revealed that the traffic light was green for at least six seconds before the vehicle entered the intersection.
It then went on to add that “thousands of crashes happen everyday on U.S. roads, and red-light running is the leading cause of urban crashes in the U.S. Human error plays a role in 94% of these crashes, which is why we’re developing fully self-driving technology to make our roads safer.”