Cruise halts robotaxi services across the US to ‘earn public trust’

Cruise, the autonomous vehicle operator backed by General Motors, says it decided to “proactively pause” its fleet of driverless cars across the United States. The operations halt comes just two days after Californian regulators suspended Cruise’s robotaxi permit in the state, claiming that its vehicles “are not safe for public operation.”

Earlier this month, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration announced that it was investigating Cruise after receiving reports of pedestrian injuries involving the company’s driverless vehicles. One notable incident that occurred on October 2nd in San Francisco resulted in a woman becoming pinned under a Cruise robotaxi after being struck by another driver and thrown into the path of the autonomous vehicle.

In a post on X (formerly Twitter), Cruise said it will examine the company’s tools, systems, and processes, and discern how it can “better operate in a way that will earn public trust.” The robotaxi service claims that the decision to pause business “isn’t related to any new on-road incidents,” and that supervised autonomous vehicle operations will continue. “We think it’s the right thing to do during a period when we need to be extra vigilant when it comes to risk, relentlessly focused on safety, & taking steps to rebuild public trust,” the company said

Prior to the pause, Cruise operated its driverless robotaxi services in Austin, Phoenix, and Houston. The company has also been conducting autonomous driving tests across other regions like Miami, San Francisco, and Dallas, and had plans to expand to Seattle and Washington DC.