Can Uber avoid public condemnation this time?
The company has been testing autonomous vehicles around North America, and one of its vehicles struck a woman walking her bicycle across a street in Tempe, Arizona. She was taken to a hospital, where she died of her injuries.
Uber quickly took actions after the accident but has kept a low profile.
The crash Sunday night in Tempe was the first death involving a full autonomous test vehicle. The Volvo was in self-driving mode with a human backup driver at the wheel when it struck 49-year-old Elaine Herzberg as she was walking a bicycle outside the lines of a crosswalk in Tempe, police said.
Uber immediately suspended all road-testing of such autos in the Phoenix area, Pittsburgh, San Francisco and Toronto. The ride-sharing company has been testing self-driving vehicles for months as it competes with other technology companies and automakers like Ford and General Motors.
The accident is a black eye not only for Uber, but for the entire tech industry as automakers careen toward a more automated future.