Self-Driving Cars Are Being Disabled By A Clever Trick From Activists

Self-Driving Cars Are Being Disabled By Activists Using A Clever Trick…

A bunch of activists from the “Safe Street Rebel” group in San Francisco are taking on self-driving cars by using a pretty unexpected method: sticking traffic cones on their hoods. This clever move renders the vehicles completely useless, just hunks of useless metal and plastic.

Self-Driving Cars

The group is protesting the invasion of self-driving cars from Waymo and Cruise, who are crossing their fingers for a vote on July 13th that would let them spread their robotaxi operations in the city.

The activists, who are labeling their actions leading up to the vote as “The Week of Cone,” don’t want this to happen because they reckon this self-driving car expansion will bring more cars into the city, which they see as a safety hazard for pedestrians and a hindrance to buses and emergency vehicles.

Safe Street Rebel, which has been posting its cone operation on Instagram, is seemingly able to disable the cars because the cones block LIDAR devices on the car’s roof.

In addition to the San Francisco activists, there are also folks in Tempe, Arizona who have become skeptical of self-driving cars. Last year, a furious pedestrian even went as far as attacking a Waymo vehicle and its driver.

Arizona has become a popular spot for angry residents to attack because Waymo has been using their self-driving cars there for a while now.


Waymo said the traffic cones were dangerous and compared them to vandalism. Cruise complained to the media that these playful protests are getting in the way of their charitable initiatives, like offering free rides to late-night service workers, collecting food waste from local businesses, and providing meals to people living in poverty.

But as self-driving cars continue to gain traction, we can anticipate more protests and scrutiny when they actually hit the streets.

Reference- The Verge, Motherboard, Inside EVs, Waymo PR, Cruise PR, Vice, ABC 7 News Channel