Drivers are increasingly relying on in-vehicle technology to help them navigate, know when it’s safe to switch lanes, remain inside a lane and stop in time to avoid a rear-end collision. Yet the more advanced and commonplace this technology comes, the more questions are raised about liability when these systems fail or when drivers lean too heavily on them.
Recently, the family of a man killed in a horrific car accident involving a Tesla vehicle that was engaged in autopilot mode has indicated they are preparing to file a wrongful death lawsuit against manufacturer Tesla, who made the car the man was driving. Decedent is survived by his wife and two young children (ages 3 and 6). An early review of the crash by the family’s wrongful death lawyer has reportedly unearthed numerous complaints to Tesla regarding navigational errors that occurred when motorists had engaged the driver-assisted systems. The law firm handling the plaintiff’s case says it appears the autopilot feature of this model of vehicles is defective – and probably what caused the fatal crash in this case.
It is the suspicion of the firm’s crash investigators that the autopilot feature misread the lanes on the road and didn’t detect the concrete median, which meant the car’s automatic brakes weren’t engaged and the vehicle barreled right into the median. The system manufacturer has confirmed the sport utility vehicle’s autopilot feature was engaged when the crash happened and that the driver reportedly removed his hands from the wheel for a a total of six seconds before slamming into the barrier. Continue reading →