After detecting 11 different incidents involving Tesla’s Autopilot technologies over the course of four years, the US agency in charge of highway safety has formally opened a formal investigation into the function.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said in a statement to ABC News on Monday that it is “opening a preliminary evaluation into Tesla Autopilot systems and the technologies and methods used to monitor, assist, and enforce the driver’s engagement with driving while Autopilot is in use.” “Specifically, this investigation stems from 11 separate crashes beginning in 2018, in which various Tesla models crashed where first responders were active, including some that crashed directly into the vehicles of first responders,” the agency said in a separate document posted to its website Monday.
According to the paper, the 11 collisions resulted in 17 injuries and one death. The collisions occurred in nine states, with the majority of them occurring after dark.
Tesla did not immediately reply to a request for comment from ABC News on Monday.
Autopilot systems have long been defended as safe by the business and its eccentric CEO Elon Musk.
The NHTSA reminded the public in a statement to ABC News that “no commercially available motor vehicles currently are capable of driving themselves,” and that all vehicles must have a human driver in charge at all times.