Tesla is popular for its high-end and stylish electrical cars. They have many smart features, including driver-assist systems. These are meant to help make driving safer and easier. However, recent data show that Tesla cars might also have risks like any other vehicle. For smart cars, you might think Tesla accidents are rare. However, they can become more common than you think.
Tesla started discussions about autopilot safety a while ago after a fatal Tesla crash. However, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration expanded investigations into driver-assist systems due to recent events. They’re receiving more reports of crashes for Tesla and other car makers with similar technology.
Read on to learn more about Tesla crashes and the risks of autopilot or driver-assist features:
Table of Contents
What Is Tesla Autopilot?
Tesla’s Autopilot is a driver assistance system made to make driving easier and safer. Its main goal is to lessen the driver’s work and effort while behind the wheel. It’s a standard feature of each new Tesla car. It can also be purchased separately for older Tesla cars.
How Does Tesla Autopilot Work?
It uses multiple external cameras to boost your Tesla’s safety features. However, it requires an attentive driver behind the wheel who can take control anytime. It’s important to note that Tesla Autopilot doesn’t equate to autonomous driving.
The Risks Of Tesla Driverless Car Crashes
Tesla developed autopilot to make driving safer and more convenient. Other automakers have their own driver-assist systems for the same purpose. However, this might not be the case in reality. An article on NPR.org recently shared that U.S. safety regulators are reviewing data of car crashes involving this type of system. A massive chunk of their total involves Tesla autopilot or driverless car crashes.
How Many Tesla Accidents Have There Been?
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Tesla accounted for 70% of crashes of vehicles with Level 2 Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS). These systems include but are not limited to the following:
- Adaptive cruise control
- Automated lane-keeping
- Automatic lane changing
- Steering control
- Acceleration control
However, this level of driver assistance system still needs a driver to attend behind the wheel. These systems can’t drive cars on their own. They need drivers to oversee and steer as needed. Out of the 392 reported cases:
- 273 involved Tesla vehicles
- 90 involved Honda vehicles
- 10 involved Subaru vehicles
Meanwhile, the remaining reports were serious crashes in single digits.
What Does This Mean for Tesla?
Based on these data alone, Tesla obviously has the most autopilot car crashes. In contrast, Tesla is known to offer the most advanced autopilot system. It’s also believed to have the most autopilot cars on the road, operating in more places than other car makers. Right now, Tesla roughly has 830,000 partly automated cars on U.S. roads.
Tesla, as a brand, also markets itself as a frontrunner in Autopilot or Self-Driving technology in the country. However, these data don’t reflect well in terms of their safety. This led the NHTSA to intensify investigations involving Tesla as it further upgrades its driver-assist systems.
The NHTSA is constantly reviewing data on car crashes involving driver-assistance or automated driving systems. So far, these data bring up the question of whether Level 2 systems are safer than purely human-operated driving. Indeed, current data are limited. However, future inquiries can provide a clearer picture. This can greatly affect how car makers like Tesla will approach further upgrades, including safety features.
Ongoing Investigations Involving Tesla Models
The NHTSA progressed its investigations from a preliminary evaluation to an engineering analysis for Tesla’s Autopilot system. This means it expanded its analysis of Tesla accidents. It will also explore Tesla Autopilot’s design, which might’ve been a factor in the crash risk.
The agency’s investigation covers around 830,000 Tesla cars, including the 2014 to 2022 model years. This takes into account the following Tesla models:
- Model 3
- Model Y
- Model S
- Model X
As the investigation moves on, the National Transportation Safety Board also told drivers to stay aware of the road even if they’re using driver-assist features. Total dependence on these systems can defeat their purpose and increase the risk of crashing. Using these systems doesn’t mean full automation. This type of system still requires a driver’s supervision, no matter how automated they are.
Associate director of safety policy at Consumer Reports William Wallace stated, “if it’s foreseeable that some part of a car’s design increases the risk of a crash, then the manufacturer needs to fix the car immediately. The company can rework how a feature operates, or add safeguards like an effective driver monitoring system, or do some combination of both—but it must take action. And if the company doesn’t address the problem voluntarily, NHTSA should force them to do so.”
Dealing with Tesla Car Crashes
Federal lawmakers have called for better safety features, especially for Tesla cars with Autopilot. They’ve also asked for improved safeguards related to driver inattention with autopilot cars. For the time being, these car crashes can become hard to deal with because they involve new technology.
However, skilled car crash lawyers can make a big difference in your case. They can help you build a solid case without getting hinged on the NHTSA’s investigations. They can also look into updates on these pressing issues. Staying in the know can help them consider all factors and elements of your Tesla crash.
Whether you were involved in a common or Tesla accident in California, you don’t have to deal with them on your own. A California car crash lawyer from Jacoby and Meyers can help you from start to finish. We have a team of the best personal injury and car accident lawyers in California, including Los Angeles, Bakersfield, Fresno, and Sacramento. If you need an attorney for your Tesla crash, we can help you get the justice you deserve. Also, our lawyers can give you advice about complex topics, including car accident settlements and more.
Also, one of our car accident lawyers can help you:
- Prove negligence
- Define the Cost of Damages
- Build a Strong Claim
- Negotiate a Settlement
- Proceed with Important Deadlines in Mind
You can call us today at 888-960-0480 for a free consultation. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to help you.