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Cruise’s Driverless Taxis Get OK to Charge Fares in California

  • Utilities commission votes 4-0 to allow taxis with no drivers
  • Company is carrying passengers for free now in San Francisco
A Cruise Origin electric driverless shuttle.
A Cruise Origin electric driverless shuttle.Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg
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Cruise LLC, the self-driving startup majority owned by General Motors Co., won permission from California regulators to charge for rides in San Francisco, marking a seminal moment for the company and for autonomous vehicles.

The go-ahead came Thursday in a 4-0 vote by the California Public Utilities Commission, with panel member and former Cruise employee John Reynolds abstaining. The company started offering free rides to the public in San Francisco in February. Once Cruise establishes the business in the city, it can expand to other California markets and eventually other states.