The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has announced plans to review a petition requesting that the administration investigate 500,000 Tesla vehicles over reports of sudden unintended acceleration, in which vehicles suddenly accelerate without human control — complainants often report their foot wasn’t even on the gas pedal when incidents occur.
Reuters reports that the NHTSA announced on Friday that it would review a petition asking the administration to investigate 500,000 Tesla vehicles over reports that the cars can suddenly accelerate randomly. The petition requests the review of the 2012 through 2019 model year Tesla Model S, 2016 through 2019 Tesla Model X, and 2018 through 2019 Tesla Model 3 vehicles.
The petition requests the investigation of “127 consumer complaints to NHTSA involving 123 unique vehicles. The reports include 110 crashes and 52 injuries.” Some reports claim that their Tesla vehicle suddenly and unintentionally accelerates when attempting to park in garages or at a curb.
The driver of a 2015 Tesla Model S 85D in California claimed in one report that his vehicle was closed and locked when “a few moments later the vehicle started accelerating forward towards the street and crashed into a parked car.” Another Tesla driver in Avondale, Pennsylvania, claimed that while pulling into a parking spot at an elementary school, their car unintentionally accelerated and “went over a curb and into a chain link fence.”
A Tesla driver in Andover, Massachusetts claimed that she was approaching her garage door “when the car suddenly lurched forward” and “went through the garage door destroying two garage doors.”
One Tesla owner posted a video of his car crashing in what he claims is a sudden unintended acceleration incident:
In October, the NHTSA began investigating whether Tesla should have recalled 2000 cars in May instead of issuing a software update to fix an issue that could cause battery fires in Model S and Model X vehicles from the 2012-2019 model years.
Breitbart News reported earlier this month that the NHTSA has announced that it is launching an investigation into a crash on December 29 in Indiana in which a Tesla Model 3 collided with a fire truck. The crash resulted in the death of a passenger and marks the 14th crash involving a Tesla that the NHTSA’s special crash investigation program has taken up in which it suspects that the vehicles Autopilot system was in use.
This is the third Tesla crash that the NHTSA has begun investigating in recent weeks. In at least three Tesla vehicles that were involved in fatal crashes since 2016, it appears that the vehicles’ Autopilot has been engaged in. NHTSA is also probing another Tesla crash on December 29 in which a Model S Tesla in Gardena, California, ran a red light and collided with a 2006 Honda Civic killing its two occupants.
The NHTSA has also stated that it’s investigating a crash involving a Tesla Model 3 which rear-ended a parked police car in Connecticut which has brought the collision detecting of the cars autopilot system into question. The NHTSA has repeatedly criticized Tesla Autopilot’s lack of safeguards and stated in September during a probe of a crash in Culver City, California in 2018 that the Autopilots system’s design “permitted the driver to disengage from the driving task.”