Driverless Cruise car traps woman after hit and run incident

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A woman crossing a normally busy stretch of downtown San Francisco suffered serious injuries Monday night after a hit-and-run driver struck her, throwing her into the path of an oncoming driverless Cruise car, which then ran her over, according to video recorded by the autonomous vehicle that Cruise showed to the NBC Bay Area Investigative Unit.

Courtesy NBC Bay Area

A San Francisco woman was seriously injured after a hit-and-run driver struck her Monday evening, hurling her underneath the autonomous Cruise vehicle.

Police responded around 9:30 pm to a hit-and-run incident at the intersection of Fifth and Market Streets, San Francisco police told CNBC. The force of the impact hurled the pedestrian in front of a Cruise vehicle, which applied the brakes “aggressively” and remained in place at the request of police, a Cruise spokesperson and San Francisco police said.

Police rendered aid at the scene before medics transported the woman to the hospital, the police said.

“Our heartfelt concern and focus is the wellbeing of the person who was injured and we are actively working with police to help identify the responsible driver,” a Cruise spokesperson told CNBC. The Cruise vehicle did not have a passenger in it.

Police haven’t found witnesses as of Tuesday morning, NBC Bay Area reported, but Cruise vehicles have numerous cameras inside and outside the vehicle and captured much of the incident. CNBC reviewed footage from the incident, which shows both the Cruise vehicle and the hit-and-run car driving along Fifth Street.

A woman crossing a normally busy stretch of downtown San Francisco suffered serious injuries Monday night after a hit-and-run driver struck her, throwing her into the path of an oncoming driverless Cruise car, which then ran her over, according to video recorded by the autonomous vehicle that Cruise showed to the NBC Bay Area Investigative Unit.

Courtesy NBC Bay Area

The hit-and-run driver struck the pedestrian as both cars were crossing Market Street. The pedestrian did not appear to be using a marked crosswalk. The woman was thrown across the hit-and-run vehicle into the right lane where the Cruise vehicle was driving. The Cruise vehicle came to an immediate stop after the impact. NBC Bay Area reported that the woman was trapped underneath the left rear axle of the vehicle and that San Francisco Fire was forced to use the “jaws of life” to extricate her.

First responders told NBC Bay Area that the woman suffered multiple traumatic injuries and was transported to Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital. San Francisco police said the pedestrian’s status is unknown.

Cruise is a subsidiary of General Motors and has been piloting its driverless fleet across San Francisco since August. The company has drawn scrutiny from first responders and the public over several incidents involving traffic holdups and delays. Along with Alphabet-subsidiary Waymo, Cruise is one of the few U.S. companies testing autonomous driving.



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