It was recently found out that the US federal agency was opening an official investigation into Tesla’s self-driving technology.
Indeed, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) stated that the investigation was open due to the Agency’s concerns regarding Tesla’s vehicles.
Since 2018, 11 Tesla crashes involving emergency vehicles were reported, including some of which where the self-driving vehicles crashed directly into first responders’ vehicles. Hence, around 765,000 Tesla cars from the entire current range made since 2014 will be under investigation. The Agency is especially concerned about the inability of these vehicles to cope with cars stopped in the road, particularly emergency vehicles.
The NHTSA stated that its preliminary investigation would look into the technologies and methods used to monitor, assist, and enforce the driver’s engagement while using Autopilot. Indeed, in these 11 crashes, it was found out that either Autopilot or a system called Traffic-Aware Cruise Control had been active.
Moreover, the NHTSA declared that no commercially available motor vehicles today are capable of driving themselves and every vehicle should have a human driver in control. However, the investigation reported challenging circumstances involved in many of the collisions, as most incidents took place in the dark with emergency control measures such as first responder lights and flares.