Car chase reveals 'driverless van' actually has driver disguised as front seat

Car chase reveals 'driverless van' actually has driver disguised as front seatA self-driving van that appeared completely unmanned has been revealed as under the control of a driver hiding dressed as a car seat following a chase with journalists. The Ford Transit was spotted on the streets of Arlington, Virginia, driving around the town with no visible driver. Although the state had authorised the testing of autonomous cars locals had not expected to see one, let alone a completely unmanned vehicle. The van was seen driving over the weekend and was hunted down by local journalists. Unlike most self-driving vehicles, it appeared to have no Lidar array for tracking its surrounding, which have been seen on test cars from Uber or Waymo, two of the leaders in autonomous vehicles. Any tests of self-driving vehicles are normally accompanied by a human driver, who sits in the driver's seat to control the car if it strays off course. Local journalists from ARL Now and NBC News 4 reporter Adam Tuss tracked the van, attempting to see how the vehicle was driving. Tuss and his team ultimately pulled up alongside at a red light, revealing hands and feet sticking out of the front seat controlling the wheel. "This is one of the strangest things I have ever seen," Tuss tweeted. "We have found the self-driving van in Arlington – and there's a guy hiding behind the seat." The "self-driving" van photographed in Virginia Credit: Adam Tuss/NBC After the reporter questioned the driver through the window, the driver sped off without a word to the reporter. The driverless car turned out to be a test by the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute as part of a study into autonomous vehicles. The institute told NBC: "The driver's seating area is configured to make the driver less visible within the vehicle, while still allowing him or her the ability to safely monitor and respond to surroundings." The big players | Driverless cars There are still plenty of challenges ahead for driverless cars, such as learning to navigate potentially vandalised road signs and struggling to avoid Kangaroos. The crazy future of transport – in pictures



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