new driverless shuttle being used in Las Vegas was involved in a crash on its first day in service.
The vehicle, which was making its debut on public roads in the US city, was hit by a truck (with a human driver) within two hours of launching. No injuries were reported and the shuttle is expected to quickly return to service.
According to local media, the minor collision happened when the truck reversed out of an alley and clipped the shuttle. A spokesman for the City of Las Vegas told the BBC that human error caused the crash, with the autonomous shuttle having stopped because it detected the truck.
“The shuttle did what it was supposed to do and stopped. Unfortunately the human element – the driver of the truck – didn’t stop,” public information officer Jace Radke said.
In a further statement on the City of Las Vegas tumblr page, the city said the shuttle was “grazed” by the truck and the incident would have been avoided had “the truck had the same sensing equipment that the shuttle has”.
It also confirmed the driver of the truck was cited by the Las Vegas Police Department. The autonomous shuttle uses a system built by Navya, a French start-up that is also testing its technology in the UK and is currently taking part in a 12-month trial in the US city.
It can carry up to eight passengers and is operating a free hop-on, hop-off service on a 0.6 mile (1km) loop in the city’s Innovation district.