|3 February 2017|
The company which delivered the world’s first fully self-driving trip on public roads continues to lead from the front.
In a report released this week, Waymo, a self-driving technology company spun out from Google’s labs, recorded far better results than its rivals.
The disengagement report from the California Department of Motor Vehicles records the number of times a human had to take over an autonomous car during testing.
And Waymo – who has “amassed over 2.5 million miles of autonomous driving on public roads” – over the last few years had the lowest number of human interventions.
Dmitri Dolgov Head of Self-Driving Technology at Waymo, blogged: “Our report shows a marked improvement in our fully self-driving technology. Since 2015, our rate of safety-related disengages has fallen from 0.8 disengages per thousand miles to 0.2 per thousand miles in 2016. (Even as we increased our driving by 50% in the state — racking up a total of 635,868 miles — our total number of reportable disengages fell from 341 in 2015 to 124 for this reporting period).
“This four-fold improvement reflects the significant work we’ve been doing to make our software and hardware more capable and mature. And because we’re creating a self-driving car that can take you from door to door, almost all our time has been spent on complex urban or suburban streets. This has given us valuable experience sharing the road safely with pedestrians and cyclists, and practicing advanced maneuvers such as making unprotected left turns and traversing multi-lane intersections.”
He added: “With eight years of careful development and testing, we’re optimistic that we’re closer to the day where fully self-driving technology can begin to make a difference.”
Tesla, BWM and Honda were some of the other household names who filed their reports in California. Check out how they performed here.