Man Falls Asleep while Cruising on Autopilot - Is He an Idiot, or a Pioneer?

Idiot or pioneer? Well, for one thing, the two do not exclude one another. He could be very well be opening the door for a practice that will spread like wildfire once autonomous driving systems become the norm, but back into the present, he's unquestionably an idiot. And quite a big one.
Tesla Model S driver sleeping 1 photo
We've all seen how Tesla's Autopilot function works. It's great for cruising on highways at speed or for trundling along in dense traffic, but when it feels it can't handle the situation, it'll issue some loud beeping that signals the driver to take over. Even if awake, a normal human being still needs about a second to figure out everything that's going on around him and spot where the danger is coming from.

I can't speak for normal people when it comes to being awaken from their slumber, but I know what I would do: I'd be looking for the snooze button and then turning over to the other side. Not messing with a man and his sleeping is something they should teach in school.

I too am guilty of falling asleep when I shouldn't have. I had once fared into the land of dreams while waiting for the bathtub to fill up, something that didn't go very well with the downstairs neighbor, for example. I have been very close to doing in on the dentist's chair as well. And, obviously, I fell asleep during class, but that's something we've all done at least once after a long night.

However, unless you're an airplane pilot, a bus driver or a crane operator, no situation where we have started snoring can compare with what this guy in his Tesla Model S is doing. He was spotted reclining in his chair with his head back while the car keeps up with the slow traffic. We can't see his hands, but we have to assume at least one is resting on the steering wheel, or his resting would be cut short.

The possibility of this being fake has to be considered as well. If you were to catch this, wouldn't you have filmed the license plate as well? This kind of behavior is dangerous, so the police should hear about it. Instead, all we get are a few drive-bys that last for a little over half a minute.

Regardless, these things really don't help the self-driving cars' case. People who are impatient and want to take advantage of their vehicle's features too soon, before a legal frame is put together, can do a lot of damage to the cause. A crash while driving in autonomous mode would seriously hinder the already highly debated safety of these systems, giving more material to those who oppose them or try to delay their implementation for as long as possible. So the best thing you can do with your Autopilots for the moment is treat them like alcohol and enjoy them responsibly.


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