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Thursday, January 14, 2016

Do Self-Driving Cars Need Humans?

Google's Self-Driving Cars Would've Hit Something 13 Times If Not for Humans

New report shows when and why test drivers have to take the wheel

James Vincent | January 13, 2016

In the future, self-driving cars may allow us to ignore the road completely, but in the present, humans still need to be ready to take the wheel at a moment's notice. Google reports that in California between September 2014 and November 2015, test drivers for its fleet of autonomous vehicles took over control from the computer 341 times — an event known as a "disengagement." Google and other companies testing self-driving cars in California have to report these figures annually to the state's Department of Motor Vehicles, and the results are fascinating, if a little confusing at times.

Disengagements related to detection of a failure of the autonomous technology. Source:

<more at; related links: (Google Self-Driving Car Testing Report on Disengagements of Autonomous Mode. December 2015) and (Google Self-Driving Car 'Failures' In Two Charts: 272 Over One Year -- But Improvement Seen. January 13, 2016)>

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