Tesla autopilot system malfunctions and steers the car under a semi, thereby leaving the car wrecked with a sheered roof and the driver dead.
In the golden era of automobile engineering, reliability and performance were the key aspects used to rate a car. With increasing digit on the calendar, these parameters are not much of an interest among the automobile manufacturers. The tech-laden car taking over the human-intelligence is something that everyone is fascinated by. So much so, that brands are pushing government bodies to bring in amendments to the law and regulations. AI-based auto-pilot systems are what we are referring to. These systems do sound like a fool-proof way to reach from point A to point B without driving the car while sitting on the driver seat. However, this isn't how engineering works.
The autopilot system reportedly steered the car towards the divider, leaving the driver dead.
Recently, an accident took place in Florida, America, where a Tesla under-rode a tractor-trailer, leaving the driver dead. The car was on autopilot function, and the driver's hands were not on the steering wheel at the time of the crash, NTSB stated. The car was doing speeds higher of the 55 Mph speed limit and when it started to steer towards the tractor-trailer, neither the man nor the autopilot could correct the line to avoid the crash.
However, this isn't the first time that Tesla's autopilot system has turned out to be the reason for a crash. According to a report of NTSB, a similar accident happened in March 2018 where a Tesla drove into a barricade, leaving the driver dead. NTSB revealed, the driver had observed the Tesla autopilot system steering him towards that particular barrier, before as well.
Tesla claims its vehicles are engineered to be the safest cars in the world, on its website.
The owner had told his family members and even showed them the car steering him towards the barricade while driving through the freeway. He reached out to Tesla technicians for help, but they failed to fix this glitch. However, when the accident took place, the car was on autopilot mode, which was switched on 10 seconds before the mishap. The driver could've also steered the car to avoid the crash, but the system showed that his hands were not on the steering wheel, and his phone data showed that he was playing the "Three Kingdom" game while the event took place.
Tesla or its autopilot systems can't be blamed for the mishaps, as they are designed just to reduce the physical effort required to drive a car. A driver should always be attentive while the car is driven autonomously, as these autonomous systems are fabricated to let the driver relax a little, but override the system when it fails to perform its job.