NHTSA to do technical analysis on Tesla’s Autopilot that killed many people

Tesla, led by Elon Musk, has come under scrutiny over the controversial Autopilot advanced driver assistance system that is believed to have killed scores, with federal and state regulators mounting pressure on the carmaker electrical.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has upgraded its investigation from a preliminary assessment to a technical analysis, asking Tesla to answer questions about its cabin camera as part of an investigation into 830,000 Tesla-equipped vehicles. of an autopilot.

“Describe the role the cabin camera plays in enforcing driver engagement/attention and how its inputs factor into the operation of the system in question,” the US regulator said Thursday. in a letter to Tesla.

The letter asked Tesla to share information about the impact on the types and timing of driver engagement alerts and how it fits into existing engagement strategy; retrievable data elements indicating its influence either by telemetry or from the vehicle’s on-board memory; and impact on driver alerts and retrievable data if the driver does not choose to share camera data with Tesla.

According to Tesla, the cabin camera can determine driver inattention and provide audible alerts to remind them to keep their eyes on the road when Autopilot is engaged.

Tesla introduced its camera-based driver monitoring system in May last year.

NHTSA is investigating at least 16 crashes in which Tesla owners potentially engaged Autopilot and then crashed into stationary emergency vehicles, resulting in 15 injuries and one death.

“Describe in detail the technical and safety explanation and evidence for design decisions regarding the application of driver engagement/attention during operation of the subject system in the subject vehicles,” the statement said. United States Transportation Agency.

Earlier this month, the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) accused Tesla, led by Musk, of making false claims regarding its Autopilot and full self-driving (FSD) features.

The agency said in its filing that Tesla “wrongly implies” that cars equipped with the technology can operate autonomously.

Tesla has now responded, asking the California DMV for a hearing to present a defense to allegations that it misled potential customers, TechCrunch reports.

The California DMV filed two separate complaints, alleging that Tesla made “false or misleading” statements about the self-driving capabilities of its vehicles.

Former US presidential candidate Ralph Nader called Tesla’s FSD technology one of the “most dangerous and irresponsible actions” by an automaker in decades.

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