Waymo's self-driving car driving up to Santa Monica starting Oct. 11

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Friday, October 6, 2023
Waymo's self-driving car service arriving in SoCal next week
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Waymo has already offered self-driving car service in San Francisco and Phoenix - and the service arrives in Santa Monica on Oct. 11.

SANTA MONICA, Calif. (KABC) -- Waymo, an autonomous ride-hail service, is launching in Santa Monica in October.

Waymo was founded in 2009 under Google though it no longer uses the company's brand name. Ever since, they've been designing and tweaking the technology to remove the driver altogether.

"A definitive study by NHTSA - National Highway Transportation Safety Administration - showed 94% of crashes in America are a result of human error," said Ellie Casson, head of city policy at Waymo.

ABC7 Eyewitness News got an inside look at the new vehicles.

It's similar to other ride-hail and ride-share companies. But there's just no one turning the steering wheel.

With more self-driving cars hitting the road this month, the ongoing debate continues over balancing safety assurances with questions about autonomous transportation in real-world scenarios.

"We believe by removing the human element from driving, we will save tens of thousands of lives every year," Casson said.

You'll find Waymo vehicles in cities like Phoenix and San Francisco. Coming up on Oct. 11, you can hail your own in Santa Monica.