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Our updated Safety Report and first-ever Safety Advisory Board

June 02, 2021 | 2 min. read

By Nat Beuse


When thinking about safety, especially in a developing industry like self-driving, we’re constantly forging new ground and asking complicated questions: What does it mean to be safe enough to drive on public roads? How do we measure safety? What are the standards that we and the industry need to set? Even after spending decades in safety, as an official at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and then in the self-driving industry, these questions are challenging. Sharing our work publicly and opening ourselves up to questions and critiques can be challenging too. But if we want to achieve our mission of making our roads safer, we need to be open and transparent and bring others—from regulators and competitors to safety experts and the public—into the fold.

In that spirit of transparency and collaboration, we have updated our Voluntary Safety Self-Assessment (VSSA) Safety Report to share the work we are doing to safely develop and deploy the Aurora Driver. We have also established Aurora’s first Safety Advisory Board. We’re excited to welcome this group of external safety experts who will provide valuable perspective on our approach to developing our technology and product, and help identify areas where we can do better.

Building a team with depth and breadth of safety expertise is a key part of our safety approach. Inside Aurora, we have multi-disciplinary experts with decades of experience in self-driving and automotive safety. And to ensure we’re always testing our assumptions and raising our safety standards, we also want to leverage the expertise of safety leaders outside of Aurora. The Safety Advisory Board will offer an external perspective on Aurora’s overall approach to safety, as well as other broader industry topics, like how we engage with regulators and the public. They’ll also offer feedback on systematically managing, controlling, and mitigating safety risks.

This Board is made of experts from fields including aviation safety, insurance, emergency/trauma medicine, automotive safety, and academia:

  • Shailen Bhatt, President and CEO of ITS America
  • Dave Carbaugh, Former Chief Pilot Flight Operations, Boeing
  • Adrian Lund, Managing Member of HITCH42, LLC and former President of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety
  • Dr. Victoria Chibuogu Nneji, Lead Engineer & Innovation Strategist at Edge Case Research
  • Dr. Jeff Runge, President of Biologue, Inc. and former Administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
  • George Snyder, President and CEO of GHS Aviation Group
  • Karen Rasmussen, Executive Director of the Independent Carrier Safety Asociation (ICSA)

Together we’re paving the way for a safer future.

We’re always looking for people who want to advance our mission to deliver the benefits of self-driving technology safely, quickly, and broadly. Learn more about open roles on our Safety team and beyond: aurora.tech/careers

Nat Beuse

Aurora's Chief Safety Officer