News Tesla's new statement on fatal crash doubles down on driver error

20:36  12 april  2018
20:36  12 april  2018 Source:   CNET

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Federal regulators are investigating Tesla ' s autopilot feature after a fatal crash involving a tractor trailer and one of its Model S cars. "This is the first known fatality in just over 130 million miles where Autopilot was activated," Tesla said in a statement Thursday.

"The driver had received several visual and one audible hands-on warning earlier in the drive and the driver 's Autopilot reduces crash rates by as much as 40 per cent, Tesla ' s statement said. A person driving a Tesla with Autopilot hardware is 3.7 times less likely to be involved in a fatal accident.

a group of people standing next to a car: download-4© Provided by CBS Interactive Inc. download-4

Tesla is very confident that its Autopilot suite of semi-autonomous driver aids is safe. So much so, in fact, that its latest statement in the wake of a fatal crash has earned its fair share of criticism.

After the family of Walter Huang went on a California ABC affiliate to discuss the Tesla Model X crash that took his life, the company sent out a statement. As with past statements, Tesla touted the benefits of Autopilot while casting the blame on Huang for allegedly missing warnings and not paying attention while operating the system.

"The crash happened on a clear day with several hundred feed of visibility ahead, which means that the only way for this incident to have occurred is if Mr. Huang was not paying attention to the road, despite the car providing multiple warnings to do so," the statement reads in part.

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Driver error and an overreliance on vehicle automation were the probable cause of the fatal Tesla crash in Florida last year. “System safeguards were lacking,” NTSB Chairman Robert Zumwalt said today in statement .

The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board ruled today that the “operational design” of Tesla ’ s Autopilot played a key role in a 2016 fatal crash that left the owner of a Model S dead. The vehicle’s semi-autonomous system permitted the driver

The statement also reiterated Autopilot's reliance on a human failsafe. "Tesla is extremely clear that Autopilot requires the driver to be alert and have hands on the wheel," the statement continues. "If the system detects that hands are not on, it provides visual and auditory alerts. This happened several times on Mr. Huang's drive that day." The statement is available in full on ABC 7 News' website.

Bloomberg talked to several experts in various corners of the industry about Tesla's current position, and the responses offered up criticism of Tesla's system for not doing enough to prevent driver misuse, in addition to lambasting Tesla's latest response for relying on the same doubling-down tactic that it's used in responses to previous, similar events.

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“ODI has identified, from information provided by Tesla and from other sources, a report of a fatal highway crash Here’s Tesla ’ s statement in full: “We learned yesterday evening that NHTSA is opening a Actually, most of the deaths in the GM ignition cases were due to DRIVER ERROR .

Here’s Tesla ’ s full statement , titled “A Tragic Loss.” We learned yesterday evening that NHTSA is opening a preliminary evaluation into the performance of Autopilot during a recent fatal crash that occurred in a Model S. This is It then gradually slows down the car until hands-on is detected again.

The National Transportation Safety Board investigation is ongoing, so official blame has not yet been cast. Reuters reports that Huang's family has hired a law firm to explore its options, and that law firm believes that Autopilot is at least partially to blame, because its system might have misread the lane markings on that particular stretch of highway.

This was originally published on Roadshow.

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Tesla hit hard by new Chinese tariffs .
American-made cars will see import duties double in China.Previously, US-built vehicles brought into China were hit with a 25 percent import duty, but under the new regulations an additional 25 percent would be piled on. With a 50 percent tariff in place, the price tag for American-made vehicles would likely be pushed out of reach for a large part of the Chinese car-buying public.

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