Last year, California gave autonomous vehicle companies Cruise and Waymo permission to operate driverless robotaxis on the streets of San Francisco. Almost immediately, the cars demonstrated they weren’t ready for the road. The taxis caused traffic jams, drove around in bizarre unpredictable patterns, and in at least one case, hit a pedestrian and left her with life-threatening injuries. Some of Waymo’s cars are still on the road. It turns out that amidst the chaos, these robot drivers had a special immunity. Driverless cars can’t get traffic tickets in California, no matter how badly they drive.
If you’re a human being driving around in California, you have to follow the rules of the road. Apparently, robots don’t. In accordance with state law, the San Francisco Police Department’s official policy is that driverless cars can’t get tickets for driving mistakes, as reported by NBC News.