Backup driver in 2018 Uber self-driving crash pleads guilty

(Reuters) – The backup safety driver behind the wheel of a self-driving Uber Technologies test vehicle that struck and killed a woman in Tempe, Arizona, in 2018 pleaded guilty Friday and was sentenced to probation, prosecutors said.

Rafaela Vasquez, who was charged with negligent homicide in 2020, pleaded guilty to endangerment and was sentenced to three years of supervised probation, the Maricopa County Attorney’s office said.

Elaine Herzberg died after she was struck while walking a bicycle across a street at night. The first recorded death involving a self-driving vehicle prompted significant safety concerns about the nascent autonomous vehicle industry.

(Reporting by David Shepardson; editing by Jonathan Oatis)

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