All of us play novice detective every time a Tesla crashes or does one thing wonky whereas working on Autopilot (or in its absence), and final week was no exception.
The dying of Wei Huang following his Mannequin X’s collision with a lane divider on California’s US-one hundred and one freeway in Mountain View prompted Tesla to concern two statements regarding the incident. In the second, the automaker admitted, after retrieving digital logs from the vehicle, that the vehicle was in Autopilot mode and that the driver didn’t contact the wheel in the six seconds main as much as the March twenty third influence.
Retracing the previous couple of hundred yards of Huang’s journey on Google Streetview led this writer to make a really apparent statement: that the paint marking the left-aspect boundary of the lane Huang was presumably driving in was pale and half lacking because it approached the barrier. Because it seems, the situation of that not-so-strong white line induced one other Tesla’s Autopilot to behave unusually, however this time the driver corrected in time. He additionally has a video to point out what occurred.
Shantanu Joshi, who filmed the video and posted it to Reddit’s Tesla Motors discussion board (later to be picked up by Electrek), claims he travels down the similar stretch of US-a hundred and one on his solution to work each day.
After listening to about the crash, he determined to test his personal car’s Autopilot on the part the place the exit lane breaks off from the southbound US-one hundred and one and carries over to Freeway eighty five. Joshi stored his car in the left lane of US-a hundred and one, which is accompanied (on the left) by the eighty five exit ramp main as much as the barrier.
“The results are kinda freaky,” Joshi stated.
As seen in the video, the marker between these two lanes splits approaching the barrier, separating the exit lane from the left lane of US-one hundred and one. That cut up grows wider because it approaches the barrier, however there’s a stark distinction between the paint on both aspect. On the US-a hundred and one aspect, the paint is, in lots of elements, barely there — particularly at the starting of the cut up. In the meantime, the paint on the exit aspect is uniform.
As the two lanes diverge, Joshi’s Tesla follows the left-most lane marker, pulling the vehicle into what is just not truly a lane and sending it on a collision course with the barrier. It appears the car’s sensors latched onto the most prominently painted line, and the lane-holding electronics ensured the vehicle charted this new course. On a quick-lane freeway journey, this can be the solely spot succesful of tricking Autopilot. Nevertheless, it’s clearly a state of affairs that may flip lethal if the driver’s consideration is distracted for just some seconds.
Observe that, after taking his palms off the wheel to document the video and permit the car to strategy the cut up beneath Autopilot management, we will see and listen to the Tesla emit a visible and audio warning a cut up second earlier than Joshi retakes the wheel.
Huang’s household advised native media that the sufferer had complained about his Mannequin X veering off the street on the similar stretch of freeway, however didn’t supply additional particulars. For its half, Tesla claims the sufferer by no means approached them with an Autopilot-associated grievance, only a “navigation” one. This writer will admit to being suspicious as to the nature of this obscure navigation concern.
Each the Nationwide Freeway Visitors Security Administration and Nationwide Transportation Security Board have opened investigations into the crash, and Tesla says it’s cooperating absolutely. And not using a preliminary report to go on, this video, coupled with the crash particulars already launched by Tesla and native media, paints a reasonably scary picture of why Tesla drivers can’t let their guard down.
[Image: Shantanu Joshi/YouTube]
– Hold the Line: Video From Location of Deadly Tesla Crash Shows Weird Autopilot Behavior –
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