NHTSA Probes Tesla, Other Automakers Over Driver Assistance Programs

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Tesla is under investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) over its driver assistance systems. The goal is to make a comparative analysis between the manufacturer’s and its competitors’ systems to identify how they develop, test, and track auto assistance packages. This follows claims made by Tesla CEO Elon Musk regarding the manufacturer’s Autopilot technology. 

After Musk claimed his vehicles’ Autopilot system was getting closer to having “10 times lower chance of accident than average vehicle,” the NHTSA’s Office of Defects began comparing Tesla’s approach to the Autopilot design to practices carried out by other companies. 

Additionally, regulators are hoping to identify any factors that may have contributed to a series of crashes involving Tesla and first responder vehicles that left 17 people injured and one person dead. 

Regulators Might Crack Down On Automakers Over Automated Driving Features, Accident Risks

As officials finish analyzing data from 12 big automakers regarding their driver assistance systems, they may consider a software recall for Tesla Autopilot. In addition, further action regarding manufacturers and how they develop and track related features might also be taken. 

If needed, regulators will initiate a broader regulatory crackdown on all manufacturers developing systems like traffic-aware cruise control and other collision avoidance technologies. This would be part of a larger safety initiative, which would be put in motion in order to help manufacturers develop safer electric vehicles. 

As part of their Tesla probe, officials are currently looking at data provided by Honda, Hyundai, BMW, Ford, General Motors, Kia, Mercedes-Benz, Nissan, Stellantis, Subaru, Toyota, and Volkswagen. It is not yet clear whether regulators are still considering looking into additional car makers.  

Considering the electric car segment continues to grow both in the U.S. and abroad, it is imperative that manufacturers put occupant and driver safety first. Making sure they are following solid safety protocols will help them produce safer vehicles, preventing traffic accidents

For more on this probe, follow this link.