Tesla Reports Two New Crashes Tied To Driver Assistance Systems

Tesla told U.S. auto safety regulators it had reports of two new deaths involving Model 3 vehicles tied to driver assistance systems in the month ending Oct. 15, data released Tuesday by the government showed. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in June began releasing data provided by automakers about crash reports related to driver assistance systems like Tesla’s Autopilot. “NHTSA has reviewed these crashes and is conducting the appropriate follow-up. NHTSA uses multiple sources of data in its enforcement processes,” the agency said Tuesday.

NHTSA issued an order in June 2021 that required automakers and technology companies to promptly report all crashes involving driver assistance systems (ADAS) and vehicles equipped with automated driving systems tested on public roads. The safety regulator said on Tuesday that information submitted by car manufacturers under its 2021 order is being used as part of its investigation.

Of the 18 fatal accidents reported since July 2021 that were related to driver assistance systems, almost all involved Tesla vehicles. The agency stressed that crashes are tracked by individual automakers in different ways and hinder performance comparisons among automakers in part because of a lack of comprehensive metrics to track how each system is used or how crashes are reported.

Separately, since 2016, the NHTSA has opened a special investigation into 38 crashes involving Tesla vehicles in which advanced driver assistance systems such as Autopilot were allegedly used. In all, 19 people died in accidents in that Tesla-related investigation.

Tesla did not respond to a request for comment.

He said Autopilot allows cars to brake and steer in their own lane but does not make them able to drive themselves. In June, the NHTSA expanded its investigation into the defect in 830,000 Tesla vehicles equipped with Autopilot, a step required before it can seek a recall.

© Thomson Reuters 2022

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