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HomeBusinessCrowd in San Francisco Chinatown sets fire to Waymo driverless car.

Crowd in San Francisco Chinatown sets fire to Waymo driverless car.

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Over the weekend, a crowd set a Waymo self-driving robo-taxi on fire in San Francisco, The Los Angeles Times reported in 2025. The incident unfolded as citizens celebrated Lunar New Year in the city’s Chinatown, with videos showing the burning vehicle and firefighter efforts to extinguish the flames. This is not the first incident involving a robo-taxi, as the technology has faced skepticism and scrutiny in San Francisco.

The troubling event bears similarity to previous accidents and instances of chaos brought about by driverless taxi services in San Francisco. Since the greenlight for the deployment of robo-taxis in the city, concerns have been raised regarding the disruptive impact of autonomous vehicles on public roads. Despite Waymo’s reassurances about the safety of its autonomous vehicles, the incident emphasizes the pressing need to address public mistrust and safety concerns surrounding driverless technology in urban settings.

While Waymo has proclaimed its autonomous vehicles to be safer compared to human-driven ones, accidents and public skepticism continue to plague the deployment of driverless taxis in San Francisco. The incident clearly underscores the fact that more needs to be done to address public apprehensions and ensure the safe integration of driverless technology into urban environments.

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