Police injured by Tesla's autonomous car file lawsuit against company

Elon Musk announced on Tuesday (28) that it is about to release the new Full Self-Driving (FSD) for drivers with a good track record. Almost at the same time, Tesla became a defendant in yet another lawsuit due to accidents involving the brand’s semi-autonomous cars. The new case was opened by a group of police officers from Splendora, a small town in Montgomery County, in the eastern part of the state of Texas, and was allegedly motivated by an accident that occurred on the day 20 February 2018.

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  • According to the process, a Tesla SUV Model X, which had the autopilot engaged, had serious failures into the system and collided with several police officers who were on the side of the Eastex Freeway. The document obtained by The Verge report revealed that “the vehicle failed to detect the officers’ cars or to function in any way to avoid or warn of danger and subsequent collision” and the police officers who were on the scene “were seriously injured”.

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    “Tesla’s blatant refusal to adopt additional safeguards or fix problems with its autopilot system demonstrates a lack supervision of the autopilot system. Tesla has intentionally decided not to remedy these problems and must be held responsible, especially when it has detailed knowledge of the risks and dangers associated with its autopilot system,” says part of the document.

    Restaurant is also targeted

    In addition to Tesla, the group of police officers accused the owner of a restaurant in the region. , Pappasito’s. According to those responsible for the action, the driver had consumed excessive alcohol and, because of that, he ended up not taking control of the semi-autonomous car when the AutoPilot defect appeared.

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    “The defendant Pappas Restaurants Inc. owns Pappasito’s Cantina restaurant, where Tesla’s driver drank alcohol in excess before the accident. The driver showed obvious signs of drunkenness at the time of the accident. The police report of the accident stated that the driver was arrested on suspicion of assault by intoxication”, says the document.

    If convicted, the restaurant owner and Tesla will have to pay amounts between US$ 1 million and US$ 28 million, depending on what the judge in charge of the case finds in favor of the plaintiffs. Remember that this is just one of the many accident cases involving Tesla’s smart cars.

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    The NHTSA (National Highway Safety Administration), the agency responsible for road safety in the United States, warned that all Tesla manufactured between 2018 and 2021 and that are equipped with AutoPilot will be investigated. According to the entity, accidents have been recorded since 2018, with 11 injured and one death, always with collisions in emergency vehicles parked on the side of the road and at times with less light .

    Because of this, it is always important to remember that AutoPilot does not exempt the driver. This means, in simple and straightforward terms, that the driver must always be aware of the car’s movements and the movement of the track. “Cruise control may not detect all objects and brake or decelerate for stationary vehicles, especially in situations when you are driving more than 28 km /h”, says the system manual itself.

    Source: The Verge, Electrek, Click2Houston

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