Policeman pulled over Google’s self driving car for driving slowly

Google’s self driving car gets pulled over for driving slowly by Mountain View police

It looks like even the AI is not unscathed from the law’s long hand. In what may be the first ticket for a self driving car, the Mountain View police department pulled over one of the Google’s smart cars for moving too slowly. The incident which happened in California was noticed by  Zandr Milewski, who posted a picture of the incident on Facebook.

In a comment on his post, Milewski said that he had “talked to the driver” of the self-driving car. (Presumably, he meant the human sitting in the front seat.) He said that “apparently MVPD [Mountain View Police Department] doesn’t get NEVs [Neighborhood Electric Vehicles, a classification of vehicle that is limited to slower-moving roads] and pulled them over to ask why they were all going so slow.”

Google confirmed the report with its own post on Google+.  “Driving too slowly? Bet humans don’t get pulled over for that too often,” the company quipped.

The slow driving may draw many a tickets for Google’s smart car because the search giant’s prototype cars can only drive 25 MPH. They have also been programmed to be extra-careful on the roads. According to Google’sself-driving car FAQ:

The cars drive conservatively. For example, they pause 1.5 seconds after the light turns green at an intersection because many accidents happen during this time.

The 25 MPH limit has been imposed for safety reasons and so that they feel “friendly and approachable” while driving on public roads. However, in case of any unwanted incidents like the one above, they also have manual controls, so that the human inside the car can take over and drive if they need to.

“Like this officer, people sometimes flag us down when they want to know more about our project,” Google said. “After 1.2 million miles of autonomous driving (that’s the human equivalent of 90 years of driving experience), we’re proud to say we’ve never been ticketed!”

Google is currently testing the cars on the public roads in the Austin, Texas and in the city around its HQ.

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