New York- The U.S. government has launched a formal investigation into Tesla’s semi – automated driving system.
The investigation covers 765,000 vehicles sold by Tesla nationwide since the 2014 model was released.
As part of the investigation, 17 people were injured and one died in crashes identified by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
The NHTSA says it has identified 11 crashes since 2018, where Teslaus, in autopilot or traffic alert cruise control, crashed into vehicles with flashing lights, flames, bright arrow or danger warning angles for first responders.
The research covers the entire range of Tesla models Y, X, S and 3 from 2014 to 2021.
Some Tesla drivers regularly abuse the autopilot, even being caught driving under the influence of alcohol or driving in the back seat on a California highway.
Since June 2016, the agency has sent investigative teams to 31 crashes involving partially automated driver assistance systems. Such systems can focus a vehicle on its path and keep it at a safe distance from oncoming vehicles. According to data released by the agency, 25 of the accidents involved Tesla’s autopilot, of which 10 deaths were reported.
Tesla and other manufacturers advise drivers to always be prepared to intervene while the autopilot is running.
Tesla issued a message Monday morning seeking comment, which was dismissed by its media relations office.
“The investigation will evaluate the technologies and methods used to monitor, assist and implement the driver’s commitment to the dynamic driving task during autopilot operation,” NHTSA said in its research papers.
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