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Blog Post

5.13.2024

Cruise resumes supervised autonomous driving with safety drivers

Starting this week, Cruise AVs will begin supervised autonomous driving in Phoenix as Cruise takes further steps towards returning to its driverless mission. 

For the past several weeks Cruise has been mapping and collecting road information in Phoenix. Now, we will validate our AV’s end-to-end behaviors against our rigorous safety and AV performance requirements. During this phase, the Cruise vehicles will drive autonomously with a safety driver present behind the wheel to monitor and take over if needed. 

Supervised autonomous driving is a critical validation phase prior to driverless deployment and builds on our extensive work in simulation, closed-course driving and more than 5 million driverless miles previously driven by our fleet to ensure safe performance on real-world roads and driving scenarios. Safety drivers play an important role in testing the AV’s performance and the continuous improvement of our technology. We’ll begin supervised autonomous driving in the city of Phoenix and will gradually expand to Scottsdale, Paradise Valley, Tempe, Mesa, Gilbert and Chandler measured against predetermined safety benchmarks. 

Safety is the defining principle for everything we do and continues to guide our progress towards resuming driverless operations. From comprehensive vehicle management before our AVs depart the garage to continuous driver monitoring and roadworthiness of the vehicle, we deploy rigorous safety procedures, protocols and performance requirements to ensure supervised autonomous operations are safe for operation on public roads. 

Our safety measures and procedures are multifaceted and can be grouped into three pillars:

  • Product Safety: Cruise AVs are fully-integrated autonomous vehicles derived from the Chevy Bolt EV platform, manufactured by General Motors, and tested to validate that the  vehicles meet all motor vehicle safety requirements after the addition and installation of Cruise AV hardware (sensors, etc.). We have procedures in place to ensure our AVs are appropriately maintained and that new software is thoroughly tested and validated through a measured release process prior to deploying to the fleet. 

  • Operational Safety: We have documented procedures and protocols in place to ensure the safety of our fleet operations for those in our vehicles and those we share the road with, including driver training, ongoing performance management processes, and responsible scaling of operations. 

  • Enterprise Safety: Safe operations start with a safety-focused culture, and every worker at Cruise is empowered and responsible for the safety of our  product and operations. We enable safety culture through appropriate governance, policies, reporting mechanisms, and regular safety training. 

We are committed to partnering with the communities we serve, so whether human-driven or autonomous, we encourage any community member to report driving concerns to our Community Feedback portal. When a concern is submitted, we will investigate the claim and, as needed, take appropriate action. Our feedback form: getcruise.com/support-center

As we continue through this journey, we look forward to working with local communities to jointly achieve our shared mission of making transportation safer for all.