LifestyleWaymo Robotaxi Set Ablaze by Angry Crowd in San Francisco

Waymo Robotaxi Set Ablaze by Angry Crowd in San Francisco

Fortunately, there were no reported injuries following the successful extinguishing of a blaze on Saturday evening.

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Published Feb 12, 2024 12:00 PM EST

Destroyed Waymo on after attacked by vandals in San Francisco

The vehicle appeared ‘decapitated’ by the time emergency responders arrived, yet thankfully, no harm befell anyone. Credit: San Francisco Fire Dept. Media / Séraphine Hossenlopp



Waymo Autonomous Taxi Vandalized in San Francisco

A recent incident in San Francisco’s Chinatown saw a group of vandals destroy a Waymo autonomous taxi, causing significant damage to the vehicle. The incident took place on a busy Saturday evening, with onlookers cheering on the destruction. Fortunately, the vehicle was empty at the time, and no injuries were reported. Waymo has stated that they are collaborating with local authorities to address the situation and ensure safety.

Emergency Response

Upon receiving reports of an electric autonomous vehicle on fire in the 700 block of Jackson St., the San Francisco Fire Department (SFFD) promptly responded to the scene. Firefighters arrived to find the vehicle engulfed in flames, with the fire posing a risk to nearby establishments such as a family-owned musical instrument store and a pastry shop. Despite the challenging circumstances, the SFFD deployed resources to extinguish the blaze and secure the area.

Social Media Documentation

Various social media posts captured the destructive act, showing individuals smashing the windows of the Waymo Jaguar I-Pace, spray painting the vehicle, and ultimately setting it on fire with a firework. The chaotic scene, which unfolded amidst Lunar New Year celebrations, garnered attention online, with videos and images circulated widely. Eyewitnesses described the shocking sight of someone jumping on the car and shattering its windshield, adding to the mayhem.

Lessons Learned

The aftermath of this incident serves as a stark reminder of the importance of respecting public property and refraining from engaging in destructive behavior. The consequences of vandalism extend beyond material damage, impacting community safety and well-being. It is crucial for individuals to exercise responsibility and restraint, especially in public spaces where such actions can have far-reaching effects.


As investigations into the vandalism of the Waymo autonomous taxi continue, authorities are urging the public to assist in identifying the culprits. Acts of vandalism not only endanger lives but also undermine the progress of innovative technologies such as autonomous vehicles. By upholding values of respect and accountability, communities can work together to prevent similar incidents and promote a culture of mutual respect and collaboration.

The recent incident involving a Waymo self-driving car being vandalized and set on fire by a mob has shocked many. This type of autonomous vehicle saga is not new, as Frisco has covered similar incidents in the past. However, the destruction this weekend left the Waymo vehicle in a state that was described as completely ‘decapitated.’

Emergency responders who arrived at the scene had trouble identifying the vehicle, mistaking it for a Zoox car instead. It is worth noting that both Waymo and Zoox are companies that offer driverless taxi services, with the former owned by Google and the latter owned by Amazon.

This act of vandalism is not only alarming but also raises concerns about the safety and security of autonomous vehicles on the road. The videos capturing the destruction of the Waymo car are quite disturbing and highlight the need for stricter measures to protect these innovative technologies.

As we continue to witness advancements in self-driving technology, incidents like this remind us of the challenges and risks that come with it. It is crucial for authorities to investigate such cases thoroughly and ensure that those responsible are held accountable for their actions.

In conclusion, the incident involving the vandalized Waymo self-driving car serves as a sobering reminder of the potential dangers that autonomous vehicles may face in the future. It is imperative for companies and regulators to work together to address these issues and safeguard the future of driverless transportation.


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