The driver of the Tesla was found on the ground, unable to function properly. Police described him as trying to sleep, after he complained about being very “tired”.
That makes it a slightly different case than just DUI, or the usual claim that Tesla controls are so poorly designed people fatally slam the accelerator when they try to stop.
Since he couldn’t really stand and struggled to crawl into the police car, it also raises the question if someone else put him in the Tesla and pushed the buttons to send him into disaster.
And on that note, his Tesla’s software suicidally drove into the back of a truck parked on the highway shoulder, destroying itself and seriously injuring the truck owner.
If that truck had been any heavier and stayed put instead of moving — hadn’t been designed so well with crumple zones — the Tesla owner would surely be dead like the hundreds of others.
This is as good a time as any to remind everyone that Nissan’s Leaf EV outsold Tesla through at least 2017 and has delivered the opposite of this chart.
Safety statisticians put the impressive Nissan EV design like this:
The chart means when 1 million US Leafs are driven for a year the IIHS predicts that only 5 of the drivers will die. That’s very low. The IIHS industry average is 36.
In Tesla terms: 200,000 of their cars were on the road in 2017 and 11 people died. That leaves us with an IIHS rate of 5 predicted dead in a Nissan, versus an actual rate of 50 reported dead if we scale to the same number of Tesla (far worse than industry average and not getting any better).
We use tesladeaths.com for this math primarily because it’s a site based on Elon Musk’s braggadocios safety claims, and particularly his request that his cars be measured on total deaths caused.
So be it.
Nissan engineering in fact did so well at safety it had zero crashes — again, that is ZERO — to report into automation regulators.
Nissan, with over 560,000 vehicles on the road using its ”ProPilot Assist,” didn’t have to report any crashes, the company said.
Looking back at Tesla it was responsible for 10 out of 10 fatalities using “driverless”. It’s a car company embroiled in dozens of investigations for deadly design flaws let alone a huge number of unnecessary crashes (273 reported so far to regulators including five fatalities).
A design failure at driver alertness monitoring coupled with a design failure at driver assistance? This crash indicates again Tesla is unsafe by design and its fatalities will scale ever higher unlike other far better engineered cars.