NEWS
21/03/2018 09:54 SAST | Updated 21/03/2018 09:55 SAST

Self-Driving Uber Involved In Arizona Pedestrian Death

It’s the first known fatality involving a pedestrian and an autonomous vehicle.

A self-drivingUber SUV has struck and killed a woman in Arizona in what's believed to be the first fatal crash involving an autonomous vehicle and a pedestrian.

The collision occurred around 10 p.m. Sunday in Tempe, when a woman was struck as she crossed a road outside of the crosswalk. Tempe police confirmed the Uber was in autonomous mode at the time of the accident, though there was a safety driver at the wheel.

The woman, whom Bloomberg has identified as 49-year-old Elaine Herzberg, was transferred to a local hospital, where she died of her injuries.

Video of the scene from ABC15 shows a self-driving Uber SUV with a damaged hood and right front fender. A bicycle with a bent rim lies on the sidewalk nearby.

"Some incredibly sad news out of Arizona," Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said on Twitter. "We're thinking of the victim's family as we work with local law enforcement to understand what happened."

The National Transportation Safety Board said it will send a team to investigate the incident.

"Our hearts go out to the victim's family," Uber said in a statement released on Twitter. "We're fully cooperating with @TempePolice and local authorities as they investigate this incident."

The company told HuffPost it has halted all of its autonomous vehicle testing in other cities as it works to understand what caused the accident.

A self-driving Uber in Tempe was also involved in a crash last March that led to a temporary suspension of testing, though in that incident no one was injured and the vehicle was not found to be at fault.