A Tesla autonomously rammed a Snohomish County, Washington sheriff’s deputy’s Ford Explorer SUV. As reported by Nexstar Media Wire, the incident occurred over the weekend.
The parked SUV sustained heavy damage. There were no injuries to the driver or the deputy. There was no word on the extent of the damages to the Tesla.
The incident took place Saturday, when the deputy responded to a call about a car crashed into a power pole. The SUV was parked on the side of the road with its lights flashing, when less than a minute later, the Tesla electric vehicle struck the stationary patrol vehicle, according to a sheriff’s department statement, posted to Facebook.
The Sheriff’s Department noted autopilot may assist but is not reliable.
In a related story, California’s Department of Motor Vehicles is said to be reviewing whether claims of Tesla autonomously driving violates state regulations by failing to meet the legal definition of self-driving. California prohibits advertising vehicles for sale or lease as autonomous if they can’t meet the regulatory definition.
According to the story, Tesla previously admitted to the DMV that its Full Self Driving (FSD) is actually Level 2 driver assist, and not fully autonomous. In their advertising, Tesla says FSD is a $10,000 option while at the same time noting that their vehicles can’t drive themselves.
Here’s Tesla’s own disclaimer, which says in part: “The currently enabled features require active driver supervision and do not make the vehicle autonomous. The activation and use of these features are dependent on achieving reliability far in excess of human drivers.”
There has been no statement from the Tesla driver.
[Images: Snohomish County Sheriff’s Department]