New Jersey man involved in scary crash after autopilot Tesla veers off road

Lucy Yang Image
Tuesday, February 12, 2019
NJ man involved in scary crash after autopilot Tesla veers off road
Lucy Yang reports on a crash involving an autopilot Tesla in New Jersey.

NORTH BRUNSWICK, New Jersey (WABC) -- A man in New Jersey was involved in a scary crash Sunday after his autopilot Tesla Model X suddenly veered off the road, and crashed through signs and bushes.

The owner says the car's autopilot forced him to jump the curb and mow down several signs before coming to a muddy stop along Route 1 in North Brunswick. Bits and pieces of the Tesla were scattered along the northbound side of the highway.

Thankfully, no injuries were reported and no summons were issued. The owner, from Hamilton, New Jersey, claims he was unable to regain control of his own car.

"I think what happened here, the system was used in an environment that wasn't ideal. The driver tried to correct. In seconds, there's an accident," says Automotive Journalist Nick Kurczewski.

Tesla issued a response saying,

"A driver can easily override autopilot by lightly touching the steering wheel or brakes. Moreover, the brakes have an independent bypass circuit that cuts power to the motor no matter what the autopilot computer requests."

The autopilot system launched to much fanfare and skepticism four years ago. Since then, Tesla says they are not aware of any instance in which the brains of the car refused to relinquish control back to the driver.


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