Self-driving cars have had a little bit of a bumpy road gaining traction. They sound great, but they really won’t make sense until every car on the road is manned by a robot and connected to a network. Until then, there will always be idiot humans, eating, talking on their phone, and driving drunk on the road. Now, a new story breaking at CES is sure to create a lot of fodder for people who question whether or not the tech behind self-driving cars is ready for prime-time.
The incident in question happened in Vegas as tech companies from around the world were gathering for CES, the largest tech conference in the world. Promobot, a $2,000 per day, rentable promotional robot was struck and seriously damaged by a Tesla Model S. The accident occurred on Sunday night as the robot was being moved to the display booth.
There’s a solid chance that this is all just a big PR stunt by Promobot to get their brand in the news. If that’s the case, you can be sure that Tesla is not going to be pleased with it. They are claiming that one of their robots stepped into a parking lot roadway where it was struck by the Tesla, which was in the autonomous mode. if this is true, it puts a major wrinkle in safety claims that have been made by the car company.
Promobot is claiming serious damage to its robot’s head, arms and movement platform. They went on to claim that the car drove for another 50 meters before stopping.