Self-driving Waymo cars are flocking to the same dead-end street in San Francisco, and residents have no idea why

Waymo
Waymo’s self-driving cars are crowding down a street in San Francisco, residents say, per a KPIX report. Andrej Sokolow/picture alliance via Getty Images
  • Waymo’s self-driving cars are mysteriously crowding a dead-end San Francisco street, residents say.
  • The vehicles make a multi-point turn and leave, but then another one arrives, people told KPIX.
  • One resident estimated that up to 50 Waymo autonomous vehicles come to the street on some days.

Residents of a San Francisco neighborhood say self-driving Waymo cars have been mysteriously flooding their dead-end street, local station KPIX first reported.

Automated electric Waymo vehicles are driving to the end of 15th Avenue in Richmond District and then making multi-point turns to get back out, residents told KPIX.

Sometimes, after one Waymo car leaves, another arrives and does the same thing, according to residents, per KPIX. The station showed footage of Waymo cars arriving and leaving, and reported that, at some points on Tuesday, multiple Waymo vehicles arrived at once.

Waymo told KPIX it would look into the matter, per the report.

“I noticed it while I was sleeping,” Jennifer King, a resident in Richmond District told KPIX. “I awoke to a strange hum and I thought there was a spacecraft outside my bedroom window.”

King estimated that on some days as many 50 Waymo vehicles drive down 15th Avenue. “It’s literally every five minutes. And we’re all working from home, so this is what we hear.”

In San Francisco, Waymo has “autonomous specialists” riding in the driver’s seat to monitor the tech and share feedback, per its website.

King said residents had “talked to the drivers, who don’t have much to say other than the car is programmed and they’re just doing their job.”

Another resident, Andrea Lewin, told KPIX that it had been going on for about six to eight weeks, maybe more. “There are fleets of them driving through the neighborhood regularly,” she told KPIX.

It’s unclear what is causing the vehicles to flock to the street.

Waymo, which is owned by Google parent company Alphabet, didn’t immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment. The company didn’t provide KPIX with an explanation for the influx of vehicles on 15th Avenue.

Waymo started testing its self-driving vehicles in Phoenix in 2017 and then offered a fully driverless ride-hailing service in the city in October 2020. Waymo then expanded the service to San Francisco in August.