Report: Tesla Driver May Have Been Watching Movie at Time of Fatal Crash

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A new twist in the fatal crash involving a Tesla Model S and its semi-autonomous Autopilot system alleges that the driver may have been watching a “Harry Potter” movie at the time of the accident.

The fatal accident occurred in May when a Model S owner was driving his vehicle on a highway in Florida with the Autopilot feature activated. A tractor trailer traveling from the opposite side of the highway attempted to make a left turn in front of the Tesla, but neither the AutoPilot system nor the driver reacted in time to prevent the vehicle from crashing into and under the trailer. The driver died at the scene.

Now, the AP reports that the driver of the truck, Frank Baressi¸ says he heard a “Harry Potter” movie playing in the Tesla following the crash, though he wasn’t able to see where it was coming from in the vehicle. Investigators don’t believe it was playing from the Tesla’s infotainment screen (which would require a hack). However, the report states a portable DVD player was later found in the vehicle, though it’s unclear if it was used at the time of the accident.

The accident is still under investigation. Baressi could face charges for making the unsafe maneuver, though he claims he was unable to see the Model S because it was traveling fast.

Tesla yesterday published a blog post acknowledging the incident, which is the first death involving Autopilot. The automaker pointed out its Autopilot system had logged over 130 million miles prior to the incident and that drivers must always maintain awareness and control of their vehicles at all times.

Source: electrek