Cruise Car raises safety questions


Dietmar Rabich via Wikimedia Commons

A Cruise car in San Francisco.

Jaecee Cantiller ’24, Staff Reporter

General Motors’ Cruise, an autonomous car company, is gaining popularity in San Francisco. This self-driving car has caught the attention of many in the city, and even the ones of state officials. Whether or not these cars are safe, that’s a question that has been the topic of debate for quite some time. 

The company has been investigated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, but GM claims it prevents accidents with other vehicles, as its “predictive and responsive behavior towards aggressive or erratic road actors” aid in the service of depleting the crash percentages in San Francisco. 

The company also states that these cars want to help minimize the risks of harm and collision to make the streets a safer place for drivers.  

there is definitely room for improvement, as time will allow these negatives to become positives.

— Don-Gyu Kim '24

This speculates the advantages and disadvantages to the new addition to the streets. Dong-Gyu Kim ’24, an engineering student and Robotics Team Member, acknowledged the faults that the company has to take accountability for, but believes “there is definitely room for improvement, as time will allow these negatives to become positives.” 

He added, “The longer that they take to develop, the safer the system will become. Only time will tell.” 

The ongoing investigation of Cruise has been proposed with the safety of people in mind, as many speculate that this could create hazards to the future of San Francisco. 

Recently, The NHTSA received complaints in regards to the true safety of Cruise, whether they should be able to attain for the incidents that have taken place. Reports of the arising hazards are feared to risk the lives of passengers, as experiences while riding Cruise have been mixed. 

Claims of “inappropriate hard braking” or becoming “immobilized while operating” appear to allude to the vehicles being an unexpected roadway obstacle. 

Cruise still awaits regulatory approval to expand here, in San Francisco.  The further investigations the NHTSA takes will determine the future of Cruise, and whether or not these self-driving cars will become safe for the general public remains to be seen.