A new Tesla accident is being blamed on the car’s smarts going wrong. This time around, a Model X accelerated into a building while the owner was parking it. Driverless cars gone rogue, or the owner struggling with left pedal vs right pedal?
Update 4:45: According to Tesla’s logs, the accident was entirely the fault of the driver, who pressed the accelerator and drove into the building. Full statement below.
“Our 5 day old Tesla X today while entering a parking stall suddenly and unexpectedly accelerated at high speed on its own climbing over 39 feet of planters and crashing into a building,” Puzant Ozbag wrote on the Tesla forum over the weekend.
“The airbags deployed and my wife’s arms have burn marks as a consequence,” he continued. “This could have easily been a fatal accident if the car’s wheels were not turned slightly to the left. If they were straight, it would have gone over the planters and crashed into the store in front of the parking stall and injured or killed the patrons.”
“The acceleration was uncontrollable, seemed maximum, and the car only stopped because it hit the building and caused massive damage to the building.”
He later added that “the car was being driven and slowly being parked when it uncontrollably accelerated.”
Tesla keeps detailed logs of each car that can be valuable in such incidents, as a recent accident revealed, so it’s likely the company will be able to explain what went wrong. It’s unclear at this time what caused the accident, and whether it was human error. The driver clearly believes that the car misbehaved. Either way, Tesla should explain these types of accidents when they occur. Otherwise, it’ll have a huge problem on its hands.
Update: Electrek has a statement from Tesla, which claims to have examined the logs and found the driver to be at fault:
“We analyzed the vehicle logs which confirm that this Model X was operating correctly under manual control and was never in Autopilot or cruise control at the time of the incident or in the minutes before. Data shows that the vehicle was traveling at 6 mph when the accelerator pedal was abruptly increased to 100%. Consistent with the driver’s actions, the vehicle applied torque and accelerated as instructed. Safety is the top priority at Tesla and we engineer and build our cars with this foremost in mind. We are pleased that the driver is ok and ask our customers to exercise safe behavior when using our vehicles.”
More images showing the crash below.