The driving car company, created by Google, is pulling manpower reserve drivers from behind the steering wheel and will test vehicles on public roads with only one employee sitting in the back seat.
Waymo's move began in October.
In the Phoenix suburb of Chandler, Arizona, owning an automatic Chrysler Pacific minivan is an important step towards driverless vehicles on public roads.
Google's parent company Alphabet owned Waymo is competing with other companies such as Delphi, GM, Intel, Uber and Apple and Lyft to launch driverless cars to the public.
The companies say robotic cars are safer than human drivers because they are not sleepy, distracted or drunk.
Google has long said it plans to skip the driver-
Auxiliary system, direct access to fully automatic driving.
Waymo employees in the back seat will not be able to drive minivans, but like all passengers, they will be able to safely stop the vans by pressing the button if necessary, waymo said.
In "A few months," a fully autonomous van will begin transporting volunteer passengers who are taking part in Phoenix.
Includes zone tests using backup drivers.
Waymo CEO John claftz, who will announce the news at a meeting in Portugal on Tuesday, said the company intends to extend the test to the entire 1,554-square-
Eventually, the technology will be brought to more cities around the world.
He said it believes its system can handle all the situations on public roads without human intervention.
"In order to have a vehicle on a public road that no one is driving, we have built some unique safety features on this minivan," krafvic said in a review prepared for the meeting
"Our system checks itself thousands of times every second.
Through these checks, our system can immediately diagnose any problems and Park or safely Park when needed.
"Read more: 'sheepview 360buy': How do sheep with cameras bring the Faroes to Google Street View
Driving a car on the streets of Toronto
In manual mode, the company also says it has redundant braking, steering, power and computing systems, so it never has to rely on human drivers.
Sam Abuelsamid, a senior analyst at Navigant Research, said Waymo's tests without human support were his first to learn about public roads at normal speeds.
He said the company chose Phoenix because the weather conditions were perfect for testing without snow and light rain, adding that Waymo knew that even with cameras, it also has radar and laser sensors.
"This shows that Waymo is confident in the ability of these vehicles to operate at least in this environment," said Abuelsamid . ".
He expects that GM and its Cruise Automation self-driving car division will be the next company to announce testing without manual backup, followed by Delphi, the auto parts maker, which has recently acquired
Drive nuonomy, a software startup.
Waymo wouldn't say how many cars were in the initial test or how wide the area it covered.
The test will be conducted first in a small area and then in five cities in the Phoenix area and in parts of the 260 sq km area.
It will eventually reach the entire metro area.
The company also declined to say how many minivans had been tested.
The company has 100 automatic trucks in Phoenix and plans to add 500.
Waymo says it has an operation team that can answer questions about the car's computer, but the car will make a driving decision.
The company said it has been testing its autonomous system for the past eight years, recording more than 8 million kilometers on public roads. Self-
The competition between the automotive industry and technology companies is fierce.
The risk is so high that Waymo is currently suing ride-
Ride-hailing company Uber claims one of its former managers stole its trade secrets and took them away when it joined Uber in 2016, part of a well-planned plan.
So high a trial
The fact sheet is scheduled to begin in early December.
Waymo wants to incorporate its technology into the ride
Current partners Lyft and big-
The company also intends to license auto-driving systems to automakers such as Fiat Chrysler.