Tesla comes under increased safety scrutiny after motorcycle incidents

Luke Pereira

More scrutiny involving Tesla’s Autopilot assist system in the USA after accidents with motorcyclists, evidence of Autopilot not detecting child mannequins


Tesla’s Autopilot safety assist system has come under increased scrutiny in the USA once again.

The deaths of two motorcyclists are currently being investigated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in the United States.

The first crash happened on July 7, 2022 in Riverside, California involving a Tesla Model Y and a Yamaha V Star motorcycle. The second crash occurred 17 days later in Utah where a Model 3 collided with a Harley-Davidson motorcycle. Both riders were pronounced dead at the scene.

This has sparked fears that there might be a problem with Tesla’s driver’s assistance tech – specifically that it has difficulty recognising motorcycles on the roads. In America, of the 30 accidents where Tesla’s Autopilot are suspected of being in use, 19 of those crashes resulted in deaths.

Tesla’s Model Y SUV has launched in Singapore and we’ve tested it!

To make things worse, a recent video surfaced on Reddit of a Tesla car failing an autonomous stop test after it crashed into a dummy representing a child, as compared to the other two cars that managed to avoid the collision. Editor’s note: The veracity of this test has been called into question.

But what’s more clear is that Tesla’s updated to approach to active safety has teething issues. In June 2021, Tesla dropped radar sensors from its Autopilot active safety system which raised concerns over the safety of its camera-only version, Tesla Vision. Tesla Vision operates on eight cameras mounted around the car and with no radar. The cameras, like eyes, send images to computer networks, like the brain, which recognizes and analyses objects on the road.

However, most car companies use multiple sensors – including radar and lidar – precisely because camera-only systems cannot ‘see’ through everything. In June this year, Tesla faced 750 cases of sudden autonomous braking reported in the Model 3 and Model Y cars in the USA.

Outside of America, a Singaporean Model 3 driver came under investigation from Malaysian road authorities after being caught on video with his hands off the wheels with Tesla’s Autopilot system engaged during his drive towards Kuala Lumpur.


model 3 model y tesla Tesla Vision

About the Author

Luke Pereira

CarBuyer's content producer loves producing entertaining, relatable content. He spends all year waiting around for Mariah Carey. Rumour has it he was married twice and is 'Luke Perry' incarnate are unfounded. @lukeypereira

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