Google has denied killing a donkey while capturing images of Botswana for its Street View program.
The denial comes after Twitter users posted images from Google Maps of what appears to be a dead donkey lying in a road.
The donkey appears to be standing at the side of the road as the car seemingly approaches, but can be lying in a heap behind the vehicle after it appears to have passed.
But Google denies the accident took place, saying the animal was actually resting in the road as the car approached.
They say the image of the donkey standing was captured after the image of it lying down, adding that the donkey stood up and moved out the way as the Street View car neared.
“Our Street View teams take the safety of people and donkeys very seriously,” a Google spokesperson told news.com.au.
“A review of our imagery confirms that we did not cause any harm to the donkey.”
Many Twitter users have disputed Google’s claim however, saying a cloud of dust appears to have been caused by the donkey hitting the ground.
In Google’s defence a cloud of smoke can be both behind and in front of the car, making it difficult to tell which direction the Street View car was travelling in.
And the cloud of dust could, of course, have been caused by the prone donkey scrabbling to get out the way of the car.
Further examination also reveals vehicles travelling towards the prone beast driving on the left hand side of the road.
If the Google Street View car was also travelling on the left hand side of the road, this further backs up Google’s version of events.