Toyota is halting all tests on its autonomous driving “Chauffeur” program in the wake of an accident Sunday evening in Arizona involving an Uber self-driving vehicle with a safety driver inside crashing into and killing a woman.
First reported by Bloomberg, the company cites their drivers and how they may be affected emotionally by the incident as the reason for their pausing of the program.
“Because we feel the incident may have an emotional effect on our test drivers, we have decided to temporarily pause our Chauffeur mode testing on public roads,” Toyota spokesman Brian Lyons told Bloomberg in a statement
Lyons also said that Toyota’s branch for self-driving vehicles, Toyota Research Institute, had been conducting “on-road tests” in California and Michigan.
Another spokesperson talked to The Verge about the incident, saying “We cannot speculate on the cause of the incident or what it may mean to the automated driving industry going forward,”
It was previously reported that Uber and Toyota could be negotiating a deal for Uber to sell its autonomous driving tech to integrate into one of Toyota’s planned minivan models.
While the Japanese carmaker has announced the halting of the program, other companies such as Ford and General Motors have confirmed to be carrying on with their plans and testing.