Waymo joins critics of California’s self-driving data

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FILE PHOTO: Reuters reporter Alexandria Sage steps out of a Waymo self-driving vehicle during a demonstration in Chandler, Arizona, November 29, 2018. Picture taken November 29, 2018. REUTERS/Caitlin O’Hara

(Reuters) – Alphabet Inc’s (GOOGL.O) Waymo, widely considered the front-runner in self-driving vehicles, on Wednesday joined a growing chorus of dissenters panning a California requirement on reporting test data, as the state released 2019 results.

Waymo tweeted that the metric, called disengagements, is not an accurate or relevant way to measure a company’s technical progress, even though it is widely used to do that.

“The disengagement metric does not provide relevant insights” nor does it distinguish Waymo’s “performance from others in the self-driving space,” the company said.

California requires self-driving companies to provide disengagement data on how often a human driver must intervene to take control from a self-driving system during testing on public roads.

Other self-driving companies, including General Motors Co’s (GM.N) Cruise and California startup Aurora also have criticized the disengagement data.

Reporting by Munsif Vengattil in Bengaluru and Paul Lienert in Detroit; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta and Richard Chang

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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