File photo
File photo

Tesla that hit parked police car while in Autopilot being probed

The driver of the Tesla told police his car’s Autopilot feature had been activated and he was not facing forward but was checking on his dog in the back seat.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration will investigate a Dec. 7 crash involving a Tesla that rear-ended a parked police cruiser in Connecticut while the car’s driver-assist system known as Autopilot was engaged, the agency said Friday.

The Tesla Model 3 struck the parked police car with its hazard lights flashing while the cruiser was stopped to assist a disabled SUV in the left-center lane of Interstate 95 near Norwalk, Connecticut, according to a Connecticut State Police report.

The probe is being conducted by NHTSA’s special crash investigation unit, which has initiated reviews of 12 other crashes involving Tesla vehicles believed to have occurred while Autopilot was in use, the agency said in a statement. Of those, two reviews have been closed and 10 are pending.

Tesla and Al Prescott, the company’s deputy counsel for regulatory affairs, didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

The accident was previously reported by Reuters.

The driver of the Tesla told police his car’s Autopilot feature had been activated and he was not facing forward but was checking on his dog in the back seat, according to a Facebook post by the state police. Police issued him a ticket for first degree reckless driving and endangerment.

This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text.

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