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Tesla crash victim lauded 'full self-driving' in videos on Tiktok

Stock MarketsMay 16, 2021 02:10AM ET
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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A Tesla logo on a Model S is photographed inside of a Tesla dealership in New York, U.S., April 29, 2016. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson/File Photo

BERKELEY, California (Reuters) - A Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) car driver killed in a recent accident in California praised the automaker's "full self-driving" features, and posted videos on his apparent Tiktok account, in which he appeared to drive with his hands off the wheel.

On May 5, a Tesla Model 3 crashed into an overturned truck on a highway in Fontana, killing the Tesla driver and injuring the truck driver and a motorist who had stopped to help him.

The Associated Press news agency cited police as saying a preliminary investigation had determined the Tesla's driver assistant system Autopilot was engaged prior to the crash.

But in a correction issued late on Friday, police said, "There has not been a final determination made as to what driving mode the Tesla was in."

Two videos of a man driving with his hands off the wheel were posted on the alleged Tiktok account of the victim, 35-year-old Steven Hendrickson of Running Springs in California.

"What would do I do without my full self-driving Tesla after a long day at work," said a message on one. "Coming home from LA after work, thank god, self-drive," said a comment on another video, adding, "Best car ever!"

Tesla dubbed its driver assistant features "Autopilot" or "Full Self-driving," which experts say could mislead consumers into believing the car can drive by itself.

On its website, Tesla said its Autopilot feature does not make the vehicle autonomous, however.

On his Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) account, Hendrickson was shooting a video while driving on autopilot, saying, "Don't worry. I am on autopilot."

Family members were not available for comment and Tesla, which has disbanded its public relations teams, was not immediately available for comment.

Tesla Club-SoCal, a group of Tesla owners in Southern California, said on social media that he was an active member who "loved his Tesla." He is survived by his wife and two children, it added.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has been investigating more than two dozen crashes of Tesla vehicles, including the Fontana crash and a high-profile one in Texas last month that killed two men.

Since 2016 at least three Tesla vehicles operating on Autopilot have been in fatal crashes, two involving a Tesla car driving beneath a semi-truck in Florida.

The U.S. transport safety board said Tesla's autopilot system failed to properly detect a truck as it crossed the car's path, contributing to the accidents also caused by a lack of driver attention and an adequate driver monitoring system.

Tesla crash victim lauded 'full self-driving' in videos on Tiktok
 

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Comments (13)
Sung Az
Sung Az May 16, 2021 8:59PM ET
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rip. feel sorry for his family.to be fully autonomous, every single vehicle needs to be communicate & share data electronically.
Sung Az
Sung Az May 16, 2021 8:59PM ET
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sharing sensory data / information only
Milen Ivanov
Milen Ivanov May 16, 2021 5:22PM ET
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If you don't want to drive, just take the train.How can spend 100k for car and not driving it..
Steven Jacobs
Steven Jacobs May 16, 2021 5:22PM ET
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Model 3 is not $100K. Learn the car before sounding like a fool
Kaveh Sun
Kaveh Sun May 16, 2021 2:03PM ET
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S/t/upi/ds think ‘autopilot’ is full self driving. Ignorant is bliss until it k/i/lls you.
Scott Fabyanic
Scott Fabyanic May 16, 2021 11:30AM ET
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I love you you see but I still love technology...kip,Napolean Dynamite
Hunt Richardson
Hunt Richardson May 16, 2021 11:13AM ET
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what did you expect him to say, that it was bad?
Rick Baier
Rick Baier May 16, 2021 9:25AM ET
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Generation Z on display.
Uday Nidiganti
Uday Nidiganti May 16, 2021 9:08AM ET
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How can we expect 100%FSD and deivwrs should be care full while operating fsd Daily we see so many accedents and this news guys are making scene if any accedent happen to tsla crazy any historic chnage comes after few failures
آریا جان چمن آرا
آریا جان چمن آرا May 16, 2021 6:27AM ET
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I do not know what is the purpose behind this news. But I know Tesla is not just about cars and it is safe to say that it is the best
Wat The
WhatThe May 16, 2021 3:53AM ET
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Another Cult member died for the benefit of a corporation and its shareholders.  All blind to the risks
Pat Mathieu
Pat Mathieu May 16, 2021 3:23AM ET
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So if it's not Full Sel Driving don't call it full self drving ! There's no free spech, but free lies is ok 24/7
Parekh Kar
Parekh Kar May 16, 2021 3:05AM ET
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sheer madness
Atlantic Coast Money
Atlantic Coast Money May 16, 2021 2:24AM ET
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Full self driving will not and should not ever happen. It puts other vehicles as well as the driver at risk. Absolutely no need for it. Only fantasized about by lazy and careless people. It brings no benefits to this world. Robotaxis and the like are ridiculous fantasies without any grounding.
Simon Meszaros
Simon Meszaros May 16, 2021 2:24AM ET
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well..would be possible and much cheaper, if all cars have ability to communicate to each other by same standard on federal level.
Bhuv Ar
Bhuv Ar May 16, 2021 2:18AM ET
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If there are trucks around and you put your vehicle in Self-Driving mode... You must be a special kinda stupid...
آریا جان چمن آرا
آریا جان چمن آرا May 16, 2021 2:18AM ET
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👏👏👏👏
 
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