Waymo executive: 'Safety case alone is sufficient' for self-driving cars

Waymo’s chief product officer, Saswat Panigrahi, reiterated the safety benefits of self-driving cars in contrast to recent scrutiny faced by rival Cruise, owned by General Motors. Panigrahi emphasized Waymo’s flawless track record of a million miles with no injuries or incidents involving pedestrians or cyclists. He highlighted the urgency of prioritizing safety, referencing the high annual death toll of 40,000 caused by human-driven accidents. These comments come amid growing concerns about autonomous vehicle safety, particularly after Cruise recalled 950 robotaxis due to an October incident involving a pedestrian. Waymo continues its driverless service in San Francisco and Phoenix, recently expanding to Los Angeles. Panigrahi mentioned extensive safety testing, including billions of miles virtually simulated and over 20 million miles driven by Waymo vehicles with and without human safety drivers.