Whoa, Did That Self-Driving Uber Run a Red Light in San Francisco?

New video appears to depict just that. 

byWill Sabel Courtney|
Self-Driving Tech photo


Well, this is interesting. A new video has hit the web showing what appears to be one of Uber's self-driving Volvos plow through a red light in San Francisco.

The dashcam video, which was posted to YouTube on Wednesday by an account called "Charles Rotter," is fairly obvious in what it depicts. The camera car rolls to a stop at a red light, as the last of the traffic ahead of it passes through the intersection. Roughly three seconds after the light turns red and the last car passes over the stop line, however, a gray Volvo XC90 that seems to be an exact match for the automous cars Uber has been testing in Pittsburgh (and announced earlier today that it has begun using in San Francisco) rolls clean through the intersection.

Interestingly enough, while Uber just made the announcement that it would begin offering rides in its autonomous Volvos in its home town of San Fran, the date stamp on the video reads 11/28/2016. Which, in case you haven't consulted a calendar in the last few weeks, is more than two weeks ago. 

The big question here, of course, is whether this autononous Uber was driving itself at the time of the incident, or whether it was being piloted by human hands. We're inclined to believe the latter; considering the company has been testing its autonomous Volvos on public roads for months now, it's hard to imagine that the self-driving Uber SUV would blow such a simple call as "stopping for a red light." Besides, the way the brake lights are on as the car enters the intersection only to go off halfway through seems much more like the behavior of a confused human than a cold, calculating machine.

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