Tesla: New crash involving Autopilot prompts another NHTSA investigation
A Tesla driver using Autopilot kills a motorcyclist in Draper, Utah. The accident occurred on the morning of Sunday July 24. The driver rammed a person’s bicycle from behind. To date, this accident is the latest accident involving Tesla’s advanced driver assistance system that has prompted NHTSA to investigate.
The NHTSA or National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is an agency of the federal government of the United States which is part of the Department of Transportation. Its mission is related to the security of American transportation. This crash involving Tesla’s Autopilot is the latest addition to the agency’s Special Accident Investigation or SCI list. Investigations that are necessary in order to carry out a possible recall of the company concerned.
What happened ?
As mentioned before, the Utah crash involved a motorcyclist and a Tesla driver. According to local reports, the motorcyclist was heading south near the lines on the Salt Lake and Utah side and that’s where the Tesla hit his bike from behind. The victim has not been identified.
According to the Utah Department of Public Safety, following the incident, the motorcyclist was knocked to the ground and died instantly. As for the driver of the Tesla vehicle, he did not flee and remained at the scene. He told local officials that he had not seen the motorcyclist. Authorities, meanwhile, noticed he was using autopilot when the crash occurred.
Why does NHTSA pay special attention to accidents involving Tesla?
Certainly, there are many car accidents every day. However, the cases including the Tesla company are to be taken separately. The company assures that their autopilot is safe, yet it is at the top of the government’s list of accidents involving vehicles with the active driving assistance function.
Indeed, as of July 26, the NHTSA’s SCI list included 48 accidents, including 39 Tesla vehicles. Among these accidents, there were 19 deaths of drivers, passengers, pedestrians and motorcyclists. Separately, the agency is also investigating 16 crashes where Tesla drivers who used Autopilot ended up run over in stationary emergency vehicles.