Waymo Granted OK to Expand Service in California

Self-Driving Taxis Can Now Operate in Los Angeles
A Waymo taxi
A Waymo self-driving vehicle sits curbside at the Sky Harbor International Airport Sky Train facility in Phoenix. (Matt York/Associated Press)

[Stay on top of transportation news: Get TTNews in your inbox.]

SAN FRANCISCO — California regulators on March 1 authorized Waymo to expand services of its fleet of robotaxis into Los Angeles and to cities on the peninsula south of San Francisco.

The California Public Utilities Commission approved Waymo’s application for the expansion of its self-driving taxi operations beyond San Francisco starting March 1. The company owned by Google parent Alphabet Inc. also has been operating the service in Phoenix since 2020.

In a post on X, Waymo called the commission’s approval a “vote of confidence in our operations, which paves the way for the deployment of our commercial Waymo One service in L.A. and the S.F. Peninsula.”

Waymo’s cars have become a fairly common sight on the streets of San Francisco, although they are not universally popular and have been known to come to sudden stops that have backed up traffic in the city.

The expansion for Waymo comes after California authorities revoked the license of Cruise, a rival robotaxi service owned by General Motors after determining its driverless cars that had been transporting passengers throughout San Francisco were dangerous. A robotaxi run by that company, Cruise, ran over a pedestrian who had been hit by another vehicle driven by a human, and then pinned the pedestrian under one of its tires after coming to a stop.

Officials in San Mateo County and Los Angeles had opposed the expansion and want more local say over how robotaxis can operate.

Want more news? Listen to today's daily briefing below or go here for more info: