Autonomous vehicle safety myths and facts, 2020 update.

California DMV disengagements reports are out for 2019, and it is time to plot some data. 

As usual, these number are not really measuring reliably the safety of AV's and there are plenty ways to game them, or overreport. Please refer to my last years post for a deeper discussion (and  2017 post here, 2018 post here) on why these numbers are essentially flawed. Nevertheless these are the only official numbers we get, the only glimpse of transparency into this giant corporate endeavor called the "self driving car". 

First the disclaimer - this data came from

  1. California DMV disengagement reports for years 2019, 20182017, 2016 and 2015
  2. Insurance Institute for Highway Safety fatality data.
  3. RAND driving to safety report.
  4. Bureau of Transportation Statistics

all which is easily verifiable. And so here comes the plot everyone is waiting for (click to enlarge):

And as usual a quick commentary:

First of all, the only players who really have a number anywhere in the vicinity of interesting are Waymo, Cruise and Baidu. I'll discuss Baidu later, since their sudden jump in performance seems a bit extraordinary. Nevertheless even Waymo and Cruise disengagements are still approximately … Read more...