Autonomous taxi provider Waymo has shown off how its so-called self-driving cars respond to tough situations just as a human would.

    Waymo hasn’t always been perfect. We’ve recently reported on one of its taxis being stopped in its tracks by a man wearing a stop sign t-shirt, or when another hit a cyclist earlier this year.

    The public’s disapproval of driverless cars also came to a head in February, when a Waymo autonomous taxi was torched out of protest in San Francisco.

    But this latest incident is a much more positive encounter, as a Waymo taxi acted quickly and effectively to avoid a potentially serious accident in the United States.

    Watch the on-board footage here:

    In response to the vehicle heading directly for it, Waymo’s autonomous driving system quickly redirected the vehicle to swerve off the road and safely out of the way.

    It not only managed to maintain control on the unpaved surface, but it flashed its lights as a human would. As far as self-driving technology goes, it has certainly progressed a long way.

    On two separate occasions, Waymo vehicles have been seen effortlessly following the instructions of a traffic controller while navigating a busy Los Angeles intersection. Have a look here:

    Here’s another example, in which the vehicle follows a police officer’s instructions at an intersection where the traffic lights had failed:

    At the end of last year, Waymo reported that compared to human benchmarks, it had seen an 85 per cent reduction in injury-causing crash rates in more than seven million rider-only miles.

    There had also been a 57 per cent reduction in police-reported crash rates compared to human statistics.

    MORE: Watch Tesla’s controversial Full Self-Driving take on New York traffic
    MORE: Watch as this Tesla almost Full Self-Drives into a train

    Max Davies

    Max Davies is an automotive journalist based in Melbourne, Australia. Max studied journalism at La Trobe University and stepped into the automotive world after graduating in late 2023. He grew up in regional Victoria, and with a passion for everything motorsport is a fan of Fernando Alonso.

    Buy and Lease
    Uncover exclusive deals and discounts with a VIP referral to Australia's best dealers
    Uncover exclusive deals and discounts with a VIP referral to Australia's best dealers