Great news! Alphabet's Waymo has just been granted approval by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC)-

to expand its robotaxi service to certain areas of Los Angeles and the Bay Area. How exciting is that?

Waymo is now authorized to operate driverless passenger services in certain areas of-

Los Angeles and the San Francisco Peninsula, effective immediately.

Recall Notice: In mid-February, Waymo issued a recall notice to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in-

order to address software problems. This recall came after two incidents in Phoenix on December 11th,

where unmanned Waymo vehicles collided with the same towed pickup truck.

Opponents of Waymo's expansion in the state include competing taxi and transit service providers, labor activists, and safety-

advocates who are concerned about potential job losses and safety risks associated with autonomous vehicles.

The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) initially suspended Waymo's expansion for up to 120 days in February to allow for additional review time.

The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) authorized Waymo's expansion based on the approval of Waymo's revised Passenger-

Safety Plan (PSP) and its expanded operational design domain, which was also approved by the California Department of Motor Vehicles.

A spokesperson from Waymo expressed their gratitude to the CPUC, stating that it was a "vote of confidence" in their operations.

They also mentioned that it will pave the way for the commercial Waymo One service to be deployed in Los Angeles and the San Francisco Peninsula.

Waymo's progress contrasts with Cruise and Apple, which exited autonomous vehicle business in California.

Tesla has not developed an autonomous vehicle without a human driver.

California regulators stopped operations of self-driving Cruise robotaxis in October due to safety concerns-

after incidents, including one where a robotaxi rolled over a pedestrian.

Waymo's new approvals allow its robotaxis to operate near Tesla's Palo Alto engineering headquarters in San Mateo County.