The vehicle registered more than a dozen instances of her hands being off the steering wheel in this drive cycle. On two such occasions, she had her hands off the wheel for more than one minute each time and her hands came back on only after a visual alert. To wit, Musk just this week took to Twitter and said: "It's super messed up that a Tesla crash resulting in a broken ankle is front page news and the ~40,000 people who died in United States auto accidents alone in past year get nearly no coverage".
The vehicle was traveling at about 60 miles per hour when the crash happened.
The driver manually pressed the vehicle brake pedal fractions of a second prior to the crash.
Some automakers, such as Cadillac, have driver assist systems that only function if maps indicate that the vehicle is traveling on a route, typically a highway, that is compatible with a auto taking over some driving duties.
Police issued the driver a traffic citation for failure to keep proper lookout. Tesla can update the Autopilot software over the air, not necessitating a trip to a service center. And now joining their ranks is the Model 3.
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The report also confirmed that the NHTSA sent an investigating team to look into the crash, but it will be conducted by the Special Crash Investigations Team, which gathers data on "special crashes" to help the automotive safety community.
The agency said the fire, which may have been exacerbated by the vehicle's battery, is the focus of the investigation, not the vehicle's semiautonomous system.
In January, a Model S hit a parked fire truck on a Southern California freeway, with the firefighters' union saying the driver said Autopilot had been on at the time of the crash. The vehicle was in autopilot mode when it slammed into a median on Highway 101 in Mountain View, Calif.
Earlier this week, Tesla CEO Elon Musk criticized the media for how they reported on the crash. The driver's family has retain legal counsel and is contemplating a lawsuit based on previous complaints made by the driver about the Autopilot system's inability to navigate that specific piece of highway.
More: Your fancy new auto steers and brakes for you; so why keep your hands on the wheel?