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Cruise fires 9 leaders, lays off 900 employees amidst safety probes

Robotaxi service and General Motors subsidiary Cruise dismissed nine leaders and laid off 900 employees as it grapples with safety inquiries

This week, Robotaxi service and General Motors subsidiary Cruise let go of nine leading team members and revealed it would lay off an additional 900 employees as it faces investigations and government action stemming from an accident in which a pedestrian was dragged by a self-driving vehicle.

In a company-wide message obtained by multiple news outlets including Reuters and CNBC, Cruise noted that “new leadership is necessary” as it announced the dismissal of “key leaders” across multiple teams, including legal, safety and systems, and commercial operations.

In a statement, General Motors said the departures were crucial to Cruise’s efforts to improve “accountability, trust and transparency,” endeavors to which the automaker committed its support. Last month, Cruise co-founders CEO Kyle Vogt and Chief Product Officer Dan Kan resigned from their positions.

On Thursday, Cruise sent a seperate notice to staff members, warning them that it planned to lay off 900 employees “through no fault of their own,” an act that would reduce its overall workforce by 24%. The company attributed the labor cuts to changing priorities and “our decision to slow down commercialization,” which it noted removed the need for “support in certain cities or facilities.”

It has been nearly two months since the California Department of Motor Vehicles suspended permits for Cruise’s robotaxis, claiming that the company misrepresented the events of a crash in early October. During the incident, an injured pedestrian, already struck by another car, was hit again by a Cruise self-driving vehicle and dragged 20 feet, suffering “multiple traumatic injuries,” according to an ABC affiliate in San Francisco.

According to California regulators, it took 15 days for the company to submit a full account of the accident. While the legal case against the self-driving car brand is ongoing, the company may face fines of up to $1.5 million. General Motors has lost more than $8 billion on its robotaxi division since 2016, although it seems to remain hopeful that Cruise will play a crucial role in helping it double its revenue by the end of the decade.

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Colin Velez
Colin Velez
Colin Velez is a staff writer/reporter for CBT News. After obtaining his bachelor’s in Communication from Kennesaw State University in 2018, he kicked off his writing career by developing marketing and public relations material for various industries, including travel and fashion. Throughout the next four years, he developed a love for working with journalists and other content creators, and his passion eventually led him to his current position. Today, Colin writes news content and coordinates stories with auto-industry insiders and entrepreneurs throughout the U.S.

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