Uber's Self-Driving Truck Company Otto May Be Violating California Laws
Feb 09, 2017 06:42 AM EST
Ride-hailing giant Uber may be ruffling some feathers yet again. But this time around, it doesn't have to do with its taxis or cars or even its controversy-filled employment issues. Its self-driving truck company Otto may be violating some of the California laws, new reports are indicating.
A report in Car & Driver has shared that the recently acquired Uber company Otto may be actually breaching the California laws as it tests its autonomous tractor trailers on public roads. The magazine has also revealed via the company's documents that the self-driving truck company has been testing its trucks daily on the highways around San Francisco.
Uber's Otto has also detailed that the operation has experienced numerous "disengages" along with the times when human drivers were to take control of the vehicle. Meanwhile, the firm has not been able to sign up for the state's autonomous testing program in which companies are required to purchase a $150 permit.
The requirement also asks firms to file their annual reports inlcusive of the number of miles driven and the disengagements. As such, if companies such as Otto had to participate in the self-driving technology, this information is crucial as it is needed.
Meanwhile, The Verge has reported that Otto has previously assured the state's regulators that its trucks were not ready yet to operate in autonomous mode on public roads. On the other hand, a spokesperson from Department of Motor Vehicles has also stressed that the company has met with the DMV and the California Highway Patrol indicating as well that its trucks were not able to operate autonomously.
On its end, Otto has claimed that it doesn't need to obtain the required permit as it is only testing driver assist technologies and not the fully autonomous ones. Ultimately, this may entail that the firm may have contradicted its pronouncement from the document that describes its testing of "self-driving system" around the California city.
And as Otto has not registered yet with the California's state regulators, this act may run afoul with the DMV laws. It should be noted that this is not the first time Otto has ticked off some regulators. Previously, it had a debacle with Nevada officials when it tested its self-driving vehicles without a registration.