San Francisco gave two providers the green light for self-driving taxis to expand in the city and operate there round the clock.
Cruise and Waymo got the go-ahead from the California Public Utilities Commission, which voted three to one to approve the expanded service, including more operating taxis.
San Franciso is now the first major U.S. city to allow fully autonomous taxis citywide and round the clock after Waymo introduced the service in Chandler, Ariz. in 2020, followed by downtown Phoenix.
The move could make way for expansion of driverless taxis in other areas of the U.S., where the self-driving technology has drawn skepticism due to safety concerns.
The weekend after the San Francisco expansion, deployed Cruise taxis caused a traffic jam on narrow streets in the city’s North Beach neighborhood, about a dozen of them frozen in place as they struggled to navigate the tight area on a busy night. Cruise told news reporters that wireless connectivity issues and the nearby Outside Lands Music Festival led to the jam.
General Motors is Cruise’s majority owner, and Waymo is owned by Alphabet, parent company of Google.
Originally posted on Auto Dealer Today