While working on a story about the aftermath of a car crash that involved a driverless Uber vehicle, I came across two automotive industry analysts who brought up the same question: Could V2X have helped the Uber vehicle — which was in driverless mode when it hit a van and rolled over — avoid the collision?
The vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) and vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) communication technologies are collectively known as V2X.
After my initial interview, the Linley Group’s senior analyst, Mike Demler, sent me this message: “There is one thing I forgot to mention. If Tempe was a Smart City with V2X infrastructure, and the Ford and (Uber) Volvo had V2X, the DSRC messaging could have warned the Volvo of an impending collision.”
Ian Riches, director of global automotive practice at Strategy Analytics, also wondered whether this outcome would have been different “if both vehicles had some form of V2V technology.”
Uber isn’t offering any insights as to what went wrong in the crash.
However, the company, after suspending its development operations and passenger pilots for the post-crash weekend, put “dozens of” their driverless robo-Ubers on the road in Tempe and Pittsburgh Monday afternoon and resumed passenger pilots. In San Francisco, Uber released two “development vehicles” Monday morning.
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