Tesla Model S Driver Killed In Crash With Autopilot Active – NHTSA Investigating
The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration is investigating Tesla after a driver was killed in a crash involving the Tesla Model S with autopilot engaged.
NHTSA issued this statement (via The Verge):
NHTSA’s Office of Defects Investigation is opening a Preliminary Evaluation of the design and performance of automated driving systems in the Tesla Model S.
NHTSA recently learned of a fatal highway crash involving a 2015 Tesla Model S, which, according to the manufacturer, was operating with the vehicle’s ‘Autopilot’ automated driving systems activated. The incident, which occurred on May 7 in Williston, Florida, was reported to NHTSA by Tesla. NHTSA deployed its Special Crash Investigations Team to investigate the vehicle and crash scene, and is in communication with the Florida Highway Patrol. Preliminary reports indicate the vehicle crash occurred when a tractor-trailer made a left turn in front of the Tesla at an intersection on a non-controlled access highway. The driver of the Tesla died due to injuries sustained in the crash.
NHTSA’s Office of Defects Investigation will examine the design and performance of the automated driving systems in use at the time of the crash. During the Preliminary Evaluation, NHTSA will gather additional data regarding this incident and other information regarding the automated driving systems.
The opening of the Preliminary Evaluation should not be construed as a finding that the Office of Defects Investigation believes there is either a presence or absence of a defect in the subject vehicles.