Tesla executive joins self-driving car venture Waymo

A top Tesla executive has left to join Waymo, the autonomous car technology startup owned by Google parent company Al...

Posted: May 13, 2018 5:23 PM
Updated: May 14, 2018 12:03 AM

A top Tesla executive has left to join Waymo, the autonomous car technology startup owned by Google parent company Alphabet.

Matt Schwall joined Waymo's safety team, an Alphabet spokesperson confirmed.

Schwall served as Tesla's director of field performance engineering, according to his LinkedIn page. The role that had him dealing directly with federal safety regulators, according to the Wall Street Journal, which first reported the news.

Tesla did not respond to a request for comment.

The self-driving car industry has suffered a rough few months of headlines.

Related: Waymo CEO says its self-driving cars are safe

After a fatal accident involving a driverless Uber car in Arizona earlier this year, several companies suspended testing on public roads, including Toyota, Nvidia and Uber itself. Uber also decided not to renew its self-driving permit in California.

The National Transportation Safety Board is also investigating the fatal crash of Model X SUV on a California highway in which Tesla's Autopilot feature was engaged. Autopilot is not intended to be fully autonomous feature, but Tesla does plan to roll out self-driving capabilities in the future.

The deadly Model X crash in March generated friction between the NTSB and Tesla. The agency warned Tesla against making statements about an ongoing investigation, but the automaker decided to comment anyway. And Tesla blasted the agency, saying it was "more concerned with press headlines than actually promoting safety."

Related: Tesla's chief of engineering is 'taking some time off'

Schwall's departure was made public one day after Tesla said its engineering chief, former Apple executive Doug Field, would take a leave of absence.

The car maker said Field is "taking some time off to recharge and spend time with his family" and he "has not left Tesla."

- CNN's Peter Valdes-Dapena contributed to this report.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 241957

Reported Deaths: 3572
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson31809500
Mobile19651361
Madison12964148
Tuscaloosa12946154
Montgomery12263236
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Blount287940
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Franklin250233
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Russell22123
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Covington218034
Escambia197931
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Pike158114
Clarke157619
Marion137136
Winston131123
Lawrence126336
Pickens121618
Geneva12108
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Barbour117010
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Butler115341
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Cherokee101024
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Clay91024
Washington90719
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Crenshaw70930
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