Self-Driving Cars Are Getting Attacked By Humans

Mar 7, 2018

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Basic logic might lead you to believe that malfunctions with self-driving cars would be caused by programing errors or faulty software. But, an unusual percentage of “crashes” with self-driving cars in California were actually caused by humans.

And when we say caused by humans, we mean humans literally attacked two autonomous cars.

San Francisco saw two attacks on self-driving cars in January, according to recent reports from the city’s DMV. The first incident occurred on January 2 when a man in the Mission District struck a General Motors Cruise AV test car. According to the DMV’s incident report, the car’s human driver (who’s there for safety reasons) was driving in autonomous mode when a pedestrian “ran across Valencia Street against the ‘do not walk’ sign, shouted, and struck the left side of the car’s rear bumper and hatch with his entire body.”

Now another incident from January is being reported that occurred in the Mission Dolores neighborhood. The perpetrator this time? A taxi driver — maybe worried about the impending doom that autonomous cars could bring to the cab industry.

The DMV report showed that it was actually the same type of vehicle as the one that was attacked earlier in the month. The report described the incident as follows:

“A Cruise autonomous vehicle (“Cruise AV”), operating in manual mode, was stopped behind a taxi on Duboce Avenue just past Guerrero. The driver of the taxi exited his vehicle, approached the Cruise AV, and slapped the front passenger window, causing a scratch. There were no injuries and police were not called.”

The DMV requires that any sort of crash, no matter how minor, must be reported. In 2018, seven “crashes” have been documented, and two of those were humans attacking the cars, a third and forth were caused by human error when the cars were being operated in manual mode. Meaning that 57% of crashes this year were actually caused by humans.

Starting in April, California will allow self-driving cars to cruise the streets without a human backup behind the wheel. Twenty-seven accident reports were filed in 2017.

Featured Image by GM / YouTube.

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

WELCOME OFFER: 80,000 Points


CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 3X points on dining and 2x points on travel, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners

*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
  • Enjoy benefits such as a $50 annual Ultimate Rewards Hotel Credit, 5x on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3x on dining and 2x on all other travel purchases, plus more.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 80,000 points are worth $1,000 toward travel.
  • With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
Regular APR
16.24% - 23.24% Variable
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.