Waymo the self-driving car company from Google’s parent company Alphabet, is testing autonomous cars by pulling the human backup drivers on public roads.
Company’s chief executive, John Krafcik said Tuesday that it will start testing of vehicles with only an employee in the back seat. The company is planning to invite regular people for rides in these fully autonomous cars.
The test will bring the autonomous vehicle technology closer to operating without any human interference.
Waymo is in race with other participants including General Motors, Uber, Delphi, Apple, Intel, and Lyft to bring the self-driving cars to the public. The robot vehicles are safer than human drivers because they don’t get sleepy, distracted or drunk, according to companies.
The company has added backup systems like a secondary computer to replace the main computer if any kind of failure occurred in it. Passengers who will join the test can contact Waymo support staff through a button inside the car. If any crash occurs the cars will provide signals as they are programmed to respond appropriately.
Timothy Tait, a spokesman for the Arizona Department of Transportation said that its top priority is public’s safety by taking more efforts to reduce crashes and deaths on roads.
“We are closely monitoring emerging technologies like self-driving cars that may ultimately support safer travel and open up opportunities for populations who today are unable to drive for themselves.”
Waymo has been conducting a ride-testing program in a region around Phoenix and planning to expand the area over time.