Fatal Tesla Autopilot Crash Data Acquired by NTSB Is Now Public

Joshua Brown in his Model S 1 photo
Photo: YouTube screenshot
A little over a year ago, Tesla Model S owner and active YouTuber Joshua Brown was involved in the first fatal Autopilot crash. The tragic incident raised a lot of questions over the safety of the system, but with the investigations ongoing, no concrete conclusion could be drawn.
Mr. Brown was using the Autopilot function while he was cruising down the highway when a semi truck turned in front of him. The vehicle's sensors failed to pick that up and, in the absence of any guard rails on the trailer, the Tesla drove through under it, ripping off the top part of the EV.

At the start of this year, the NHTSA ended its investigation and confirmed the driving aid system was not at fault. That means the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is the only institution that is still looking into the matter, and even though the investigation is still ongoing, it has released all the data it has gathered so far.

There are hundreds of pages split under various topics, but the findings so far seem to point in the same direction as NHTSA's conclusion, even though they don't shed any new light on why Joshua didn't even hit the brakes.

One thing the NTSB search appears to confirm is that, despite initial reports, Joshua Brown was not watching a video at the time of the crash. We remind you that Tesla stressed even from the beginning that using the Autopilot is not a substitute for staying alert and always being ready to jump in.

Furthermore, the NTSB data indicates that Joshua was summoned to grab the controls several times before the accident, but he failed to do so. This is one of the things that changed following the fatal crash. These days, if the alerts are ignored, the car will move over to the right and come to a complete stop.

There is no planned date for the conclusion of the investigation, but releasing its findings to the public might suggest the NTSB thinks it's not too far away.
If you liked the article, please follow us:  Google News icon Google News Youtube Instagram
About the author: Vlad Mitrache
Vlad Mitrache profile photo

"Boy meets car, boy loves car, boy gets journalism degree and starts job writing and editing at a car magazine" - 5/5. (Vlad Mitrache if he was a movie)
Full profile


Would you like AUTOEVOLUTION to send you notifications?

You will only receive our top stories