SAN FRANCISCO — Self-driving cars are becoming more of a common sight for people across some U.S. cities. What isn't as common is seeing one get pulled over by the police, and then bolting off just moments afterward.
But that's exactly what happened on April 2 in San Francisco, where an interaction between a self-driving taxi and a police officer was all captured on camera for the amusement of social media users.
In the video uploaded to Instagram, a police officer is seen approaching a Cruise Chevy Bolt "robotaxi" that pulled over on the side of the street. A man seems to try to inform the officer that he won't be finding a driver behind the wheel, shouting: "Ain't nobody in it! This is crazy."
After failing to open the door, the police officer then walks back to his squad car, only for the vehicle to chime back on and cross the intersection, much to the bewilderment of spectators who vocally laugh and cackle.
Luckily, the vehicle pulls over again after crossing the intersection, and this time SFPD takes no chances, with two officers walking over to the car determined to solve the issue.
After the incident, Cruise, a subsidiary of General Motors, tweeted that it was aware of the incident and was cooperating with law enforcement to resolve the matter.
"Our AV yielded to the police vehicle, then pulled over to the nearest safe location for the traffic stop, as intended," the company wrote. "An officer contacted Cruise personnel and no citation was issued."
While no one was hurt during this pull-over, autonomous vehicles have been at the center of some major incidents. In 2018, an Uber self driving car hit and killed a woman crossing the street in Tempe. While a safety driver was in the vehicle at the time, they were looking down and the car didn't stop on its own. The incident forced Uber to delay its rollout in California.
Cruise first launched San Francisco robotaxi services to the public in February. Restrictions currently mean the vehicles can only operate within certain areas of the city during designated times.