Tesla is in the news again because on April 18, 2021 two passengers in the Houston, Texas area were killed in a Tesla that appeared to have no driver.
The notion that currently we have cars that are capable of fullying driving themselves without any driver involvement is inaccurate. Current “self-driving” cars are not fully autonomous.
A Houston news source indicates that the 2019 Tesla Model S was traveling on a road. At some point, the Tesla, allegedly traveling at a high rate of speed, arrived at a slight curve. At that point, the driverless Tesla allegedly went off the roadway, collided into a tree and then burst into flames.
In contradiction to any claims to be self-driving, Tesla owner manuals, posted on Tesla's website, clearly cautions drivers to always keep their hands on the wheel and be ready to take over at any time. This obviously necessitates that each Tesla driver remain attentive at all times, and not be lulled into any false sense of security by the availability of the vehicle's features.
Per an April 21, 2021 US News and World Report article, in the instant Houston crash, Harris County Precinct 4 Constable Mark Herman told The Wall Street Journal that investigators are “99.9% sure” that "there was no one at the wheel" when the crash happened.
Tesla's Autopilot feature can be activated on roads that are actually too complicated for it to safely maneuver.
On Cadillacs, GM has a system called “Super Cruise”. It permits hands-free driving on “fully mapped highways and freeways” by using a camera to track the driver's eye movements. If a Cadillac driver takes their eyes on the road for more than a few moments, the system alerts them, and will cause the car to stop if the driver does not pay attention. GM's website cautions its drivers: “Always pay attention while driving and when using Super Cruise. Do not use a handheld device.”
If you were in an injury accident with a semi-autonomous vehicle, or one equipped with any automated controls, please call me.
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