A group of skateboarders mobbed a Waymo vehicle in San Francisco on Saturday night, jumping on and spraypainting the car. The car was not in driverless mode at the time and the driver was able to leave safely, according to a statement from a Waymo spokesperson. In a video of the encounter, dozens of people can be seen swarming the car, several jumping on top of it and dancing, a few drawing on the car, and at least one individual sitting on the large sensor on the roof.
“At approximately 10 pm on July 9, one of our cars operating in manual mode in San Francisco was surrounded by individuals who jumped onto the hood, roof and the trunk of the car and vandalized the vehicle with spray paint,” a Waymo spokesperson told Motherboard. “The autonomous specialist was eventually able to direct the car safely out of the crowd and remove themselves from the situation. We are in close communication with the San Francisco Police Department as they actively investigate this incident."
The rowdiness took place around 10 pm in the Mission District after the Dolores Hill Bomb, an annual event where hundreds of skateboarders gather and go down a steep hill. Afterwards they tend to stick around and party, resulting in general revelry, rowdiness, and light vandalism.
There is no indication the Waymo vehicle was targeted because it was capable of driverless operation or for any reason other than it was a car that drove into the fray. In 2020, Hill Bombers attacked an SUV that drove down Dolores Street.