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Uber grounded its entire fleet of self-driving cars after the fatal accident earlier this year in Arizona. It halted testing of its self-driving Volvo XC90 vehicles after the accident. Uber today announced that it’s putting these cars back on public roads in Pittsburgh but they will not be driven in autonomous mode. These cars will only be operated in manual mode.

Manual mode means that there’s going to be a human safety driver controlling the car at all times. Uber previously had safety drivers behind the wheel when the car was driving itself, like every other company that’s testing autonomous cars. Its cars will completely be driven by the human driver initially.

There’s going to be a second “Mission Specialist” in the passenger seat who will document notable events. The new safety standards that Uber has introduced following the accident include a real-time driver monitoring system to ensure that the driver behind the wheel is attentive at all times. If the system feels that the driver is inattentive it will give an audio alert to cue the driver.

It will even alert a remote monitor who will take appropriate action once the situation has been assessed. The built-in collision avoidance system will remain enabled even during manual driving. The cars will only be driven manually but the advanced sensors and LiDAR radar will remain operational so that Uber can update its HD maps of Pittsburgh.

Filed in Transportation. Read more about Self-Driving Cars and Uber. Source: medium

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