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What happened recently when an autonomous vehicle got pulled over?

Answer: The car acted like it was going to make a break for it.

lights on a police car
Shutterstock/Strike Pattern
An autonomous taxi was recently pulled over by police in San Francisco for not having its headlights on at night. Fortunately for the rest of us, a bystander decided to record the exchange on video and share it with the masses.

In the video, an officer gets out of their car and approaches the AV and attempts to open the door upon seeing that there are no people inside. The officer starts walking back to their vehicle, at which point the AV seemingly decides this is its opportunity to make a break for it. It quickly drives away, crossing the nearby intersection before pulling over and turning on its hazards. At this point it is approached by three officers, one of which appears to be talking on the phone.

As it turns out, the car wasn’t actually trying to flee the scene. According to Cruise, the company the vehicle belongs to, the AV “yielded to the police vehicle, then pulled over to the nearest safe location for the traffic stop, as intended. An officer contacted Cruise personnel and no citation was issued.” Of course, it’s far more entertaining for the rest of us to think that the vehicle was trying to escape punishment.