Tesla recalls 54,000 cars as self-driving software lets them run…

Tesla recalls self-driving software on 54,000 cars after it let them run stop signs: Electric vehicle maker will disable feature with an over-the-internet update early February

  •  The firm will disable the feature with an over-the-internet software update
  •  The rolling stop feature allows vehicles to go through junctions with stop signs at up to 5.6mph
  •  Tesla agreed to the recall after two meetings with officials from the US NHTSA
  •  Tesla knows of no crashes or injuries caused by the feature
  • Recall covers Model S sedans and X SUVs from 2016 to 2022, as well as 2017 to 2022 Model 3 sedans and 2020 to 2022 Model Y SUVs
  • A firmware release to disable the rolling stops is expected to be sent out in early February 

Tesla is recalling nearly 54,000 cars and SUVs because their full self-driving software lets them roll through stop signs without coming to a complete halt.

The firm will disable the feature with an over-the-internet software update, documents posted on Tuesday by US safety regulators say.

The feature, that was being tested by a number of drivers, lets vehicles go through junctions with a stop sign at up to 5.6 miles per hour. 

The documents say Tesla agreed to the recall after two meetings with officials from the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Tesla says it knows of no crashes or injuries caused by the feature, and no warranty claims as a result of issues with the rolling start feature.

Tesla is recalling nearly 54,000 cars and SUVs because their full self-driving software lets them roll through stop signs without coming to a complete halt

Recall covers Model S sedans and X SUVs from 2016 to 2022, as well as 2017 to 2022 Model 3 sedans and 2020 to 2022 Model Y SUVs

The recall covers Model S sedans and X SUVs from 2016 to 2022, as well as 2017 to 2022 Model 3 sedans and 2020 to 2022 Model Y SUVs.

Selected Tesla drivers are beta testing the full self-driving software, but have to keep their hands on the steering wheel at all times.

The cars cannot drive themselves and drivers must be ready to take action at all times, the company says.

A firmware release to disable the rolling stops feature, which was first released on October 20, is expected to be sent out in early February.

Safety advocates complain that Tesla should not be allowed to test the vehicles on public roads with untrained drivers, and that the Tesla software can malfunction, exposing other motorists and pedestrians to danger. Most of the other car companies with similar software test with trained human safety drivers.

The NHTSA met Tesla on January 10 and 19 to discuss how the software operates, the documents said.

On January 20, the company agreed to disable the rolling stops with the software update.

Owners will get required notification letters on March 28.

Elon Musk’s Tesla introduced the rolling stop feature in a software update that was sent out to the testing owners on October 20


Autopilot uses cameras, ultrasonic sensors and radar to see and sense the environment around the car. 

The sensor and camera suite provides drivers with an awareness of their surroundings that a driver alone would not otherwise have. 

A powerful onboard computer processes these inputs in a matter of milliseconds to help what the company say makes driving ‘safer and less stressful.’

Autopilot is a hands-on driver assistance system that is intended to be used only with a fully attentive driver. 

It does not turn a Tesla into a self-driving car nor does it make a car autonomous.

Before enabling Autopilot, driver must agree to ‘keep your hands on the steering wheel at all times’ and to always ‘maintain control and responsibility for your car.’ 

Once engaged, if insufficient torque is applied, Autopilot will also deliver an escalating series of visual and audio warnings, reminding drivers to place their hands on the wheel. 

Any of Autopilot’s features can be overridden at any time by steering or applying the brakes. 

The rolling stop feature lets the Tesla go through stop signs as long as the owner has enabled the function.

The vehicles have to be travelling below 5.6mph while approaching the intersection, and no ‘relevant’ moving cars, pedestrians or cyclists can be detected nearby.

All roads leading to the junction had to have speed limits of 30mph or less, the documents said.

The Teslas would then be allowed to go through the intersection at 0.1mph to 5.6mph without coming to a complete stop.

Alain Kornhauser, faculty chairman of autonomous vehicle engineering at Princeton University, said the recall is an example of the NHTSA doing its job as the nation’s road safety watchdog.

The recall ‘shows that they can be effective even if Tesla should have been more responsible in the first place,’ he said.

In November, the NHTSA said it was looking into a complaint from a Tesla driver that the full self-driving software caused a crash.

The driver said the Model Y went into the wrong lane and was hit by another vehicle. The SUV gave the driver an alert halfway through the turn and the driver tried to turn the wheel to avoid other traffic, according to the complaint.

But the car took control and ‘forced itself into the incorrect lane,’ the driver reported.

No one was hurt in the crash on November 3 in Brea, California, according to the complaint.

In December, Tesla agreed to update its less sophisticated autopilot driver-assist system after the NHTSA opened an investigation.

The company agreed to stop allowing video games to be played on centre touch screens while its vehicles are moving.

The agency is also investigating why Teslas on autopilot have repeatedly crashed into emergency vehicles parked on roads.


January 22, 2018 in Culver City: A Tesla Model S hit the back of a fire truck parked at an accident in Culver City around 8:30 am on Interstate 405 using the cars Autopilot system. The Tesla, which was going 65mph, suffered ‘significant damage’ and the firetruck was taken out of service for body work.

May 30, 2018 in Laguna Beach: Authorities said a Tesla sedan in Autopilot mode crashed into a parked police cruiser in Laguna Beach. Laguna Beach Police Sgt. Jim Cota says the officer was not in the cruiser during the crash. He said the Tesla driver suffered minor injuries.

The police SUV ended up with its two passenger-side wheels on a sidewalk.

December 7, 2019 in Norwalk, CT: A 2018 Tesla Model 3 on Interstate 95 in Norwalk, Connecticut using the Autopilot driver assistance system rear-ended a parked police car. 

December 29, 2019 in Cloverdale, IN: A 2019 Tesla on Interstate 70 in Cloverdale, Indiana hit the back of a parked firetruck. 

The Tesla driver, Derrick Monet, and his wife, Jenna Monet, both suffered serious injuries and were transported to the hospital for immediate medical care. Jenna ultimately succumbed to her injuries and was pronounced dead at Terre Haute Regional Hospital.

June 30, 2020 in West Bridgewater, MA: A Weston, Massachusetts man driving a Tesla hit a Massachusetts State Police cruiser that was stopped in the left lane of Route 24 in West Bridgewater. A trooper who was on the scene reported that the driver, Nicholas Ciarlone, faced a negligent driving charge and was arraigned in September 2020.

July 15, 2020 in Conchise County, AZ: A Tesla Model S hit an Arizona Department of Public Safety patrol car, resulting in the patrol car rear-ending an ambulance that was on the scene of an earlier car accident. No one was seriously injured, but the Tesla driver was taken to the hospital for injuries.

August 26, 2020 in Charlotte, NC: A Tesla driver watching a movie crashed into a Nash County Sherriff’s Office deputy vehicle in Charlotte, North Carolina on US 64 west.

The driver, Devainder Goli, of Raleigh, was accused of violating the move-over law and watching television while operating a vehicle. 

February 27, 2021 in Montgomery County, TX: The driver of a Tesla rear-ended a police cruise during a traffic stop in Montgomery County, Texas. Five deputy constables were injured during the accident, which happened around 1:15 am on Eastex Freeway near East River Road. 

The Tesla driver was not injured, but was taken into custody on a DWI charge. 

March 17, 2021 in Lansing, MI: A Tesla on autopilot crashed into a Michigan State Police car. Troopers from the Lansing Post had been investigating a crash involving a car and a deer on I-96 near Waverly Rd in Eaton County at around 1:12am.

While investigating the crash, a Tesla driving on autopilot struck the patrol car, which had its emergency lights on.

Neither the driver of the Tesla – a 22-year-old man from Lansing – nor the troopers were injured at the scene. Police issued the unidentified man a citation for failure to move over and driving while license suspended.  

May 15, 2021 in Arlington, WA: A Tesla driving in Arlington, Washington hit a police vehicle that resulted in ‘significant damage’ to the police car.

There were no injuries reported from the incident. 

May 19, 2021 in Miami, Florida: Three people were hospitalized after a Tesla hit a parked Miami-Dade County Department Transportation Road Ranger truck that was blocking the left lane of I-95 to help clear the debris of an earlier crash.

The driver of the Tesla was transported to a nearby hospital with with severe, albeit non-life-threatening, injuries.

July 10 2021 in San Diego: A woman drove her Tesla onto a stretch of Highway 56 that had been closed to investigate an earlier fatal accident. That saw her Tesla smash into a parked, unoccupied highway cruiser.

The woman was arrested on suspicion of DUI, and her passenger was injured.

August 28, 2021 in Orlando  A Tesla Model 3 struck a Florida Highway Patrol cruiser that had pulled over to help a broken-down car. The 27 year-old driver and his passenger both suffered minor injuries. The trooper did not get hurt. 


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