Tesla Crash Victim Lauded 'Full Self-Driving' in TikTok Videos

A 35-year-old man was killed when his Tesla Model 3 struck an overturned truck on a freeway near Los Angeles on May 5.

Tesla Crash Victim Lauded 'Full Self-Driving' in TikTok Videos

Since 2016, at least three Tesla vehicles operating on Autopilot have been in fatal crashes

Highlights
  • Tesla dubbed its driver assistant features Autopilot or Full Self-driving
  • Tesla said its Autopilot feature does not make the vehicle autonomous
  • Hendrickson was shooting a video while driving on autopilot

A Tesla car driver killed in a recent accident in California praised the automaker's "full self-driving" features, and posted videos on his apparent TikTok account, in which he appeared to drive with his hands off the wheel.

On May 5, a Tesla Model 3 crashed into an overturned truck on a highway in Fontana, killing the Tesla driver and injuring the truck driver and a motorist who had stopped to help him.

The Associated Press news agency cited police as saying a preliminary investigation had determined the Tesla's driver assistant system Autopilot was engaged prior to the crash.

But in a correction issued late on Friday, police said, "There has not been a final determination made as to what driving mode the Tesla was in."

Two videos of a man driving with his hands off the wheel were posted on the alleged TikTok account of the victim, 35-year-old Steven Hendrickson of Running Springs in California.

"What would do I do without my full self-driving Tesla after a long day at work," said a message on one. "Coming home from LA after work, thank god, self-drive," said a comment on another video, adding, "Best car ever!"

Tesla dubbed its driver assistant features "Autopilot" or "Full Self-driving," which experts say could mislead consumers into believing the car can drive by itself.

On its website, Tesla said its Autopilot feature does not make the vehicle autonomous, however.

On his Facebook account, Hendrickson was shooting a video while driving on autopilot, saying, "Don't worry. I am on autopilot."

Family members were not available for comment and Tesla, which has disbanded its public relations teams, was not immediately available for comment.

Tesla Club-SoCal, a group of Tesla owners in Southern California, said on social media that he was an active member who "loved his Tesla." He is survived by his wife and two children, it added.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has been investigating more than two dozen crashes of Tesla vehicles, including the Fontana crash and a high-profile one in Texas last month that killed two men.

Since 2016, at least three Tesla vehicles operating on Autopilot have been in fatal crashes, two involving a Tesla car driving beneath a semi-truck in Florida.

The US transport safety board said Tesla's autopilot system failed to properly detect a truck as it crossed the car's path, contributing to the accidents also caused by a lack of driver attention and an adequate driver monitoring system.


© Thomson Reuters 2021


What is the best phone under Rs. 30,000 in India right now? We discussed this on Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast. Orbital is available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Amazon Music and wherever you get your podcasts.
Comments

For the latest tech news and reviews, follow Gadgets 360 on Twitter, Facebook, and Google News. For the latest videos on gadgets and tech, subscribe to our YouTube channel.

Further reading: Model 3, Tesla, self driving, autopilot
Bill Gates Said to Have Left Microsoft Board Amid Probe into Relationship With Employee

Related Stories

Share on Facebook Tweet Snapchat Share Reddit Comment
 
 

Advertisement

Advertisement

© Copyright Red Pixels Ventures Limited 2021. All rights reserved.
Listen to the latest songs, only on JioSaavn.com