Sometimes it’s better to follow your gut than your gadget. That was the case in San Francisco on Monday when an Uber driver tried to drive his sedan down a flight of stairs because his app told him to. After driving on a pedestrian walkway, the vehicle made its way toward the steps where it got stuck nose-down for nearly two hours, Business Insider reports.
Photos from the bizarre incident have been circulating across social media, where people are still trying to piece together how this might have happened.
2016: “Teslas will be self-driving within 6 months!”— Alex Roy (@AlexRoy144) March 26, 2018
2017: “Uber drivers are underpaid, but don’t worry! Self-driving cars are almost here!”
2018: “The car was driven by a human at the time of the accident. Also, self-driving cars may be delayed.”https://t.co/eQtjUrZJXK
Uber driver said GPS told him to take stairs. Pretty clear it’s not an exit. pic.twitter.com/w8zZJS2Pkr— Steven Bracco (@Braccs) March 26, 2018
As you can see, the white Toyota Camry was attempting to drive down the stairs but got its back tire stuck on the top platform. The car could only be removed after a tow truck was called in by customers at a nearby Safeway. But even that proved difficult. The winch from the truck reportedly snapped, sending the car barreling toward a trash can.
Incredibly, this is not the first attempt at this misguided stunt. In 2014, a cab driver got his Toyota stuck going down those same steps.
While this may seem like human error (this was not a self-driving Uber) at first glance, the driver, who has worked for the ride-hailing company for about a year, said he was simply following the directions on his Uber app. He urged Safeway to make changes to its parking lot and vowed never to drive in the area again.
Fortunately, everyone in the vehicle was safe, including two Uber passengers in the back seat.