- Title: Tesla automated parking problems seen liability of app 'driver' for now
- Date: 4th October 2019
- Summary: LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA, UNITED STATES (FILE - JANUARY 12, 2018) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF TELSA MODEL 3
- Embargoed: 18th October 2019 23:51
- Keywords: parking crashings crash selfparking driving tesla 3 users Elon Musk Tesla small drivers
- Location: LOS ANGELES & POMONA, CALIFORNIA, FRISCO, TEXAS, HILLSBOROUGH, NORTH CAROLINA, UNITED STATES
- City: LOS ANGELES & POMONA, CALIFORNIA, FRISCO, TEXAS, HILLSBOROUGH, NORTH CAROLINA, UNITED STATES
- Country: USA
- Topics: Company News Markets,Economic Events
- Reuters ID: LVA005AZOOJLX
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:EDITORS PLEASE NOTE: QUALITY AS INCOMING / PROFANITY IN SHOT 2
Tesla Inc TSLA.O owners summoning their driverless cars in parking lots are likely liable for crashes, lawyers said after a series of internet videos showed problems with cars running new software.
If the accidents pile up, though, Tesla itself is sure to be brought into a legal fight, insurance industry experts said.
The incidents highlight a shifting landscape for long-held assumptions about auto insurance and accident blame as more car manufacturers offer features that can automate parallel parking, avoid collisions, and take over steering during traffic, among other things.
A Tesla software update last week added a so-called Smart Summon feature for some customers. When the car is within 200 feet and in their line of sight, they can use a phone app to summon the vehicle in a parking lot. Users start the car by holding down a button and stop the car by releasing it, Tesla said in instructions, warning users to be careful.
U.S. regulators are looking into parking lot crashes involving Tesla cars driving themselves to their owners, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) said on Wednesday (October 2).
"This was an interesting one to explain to my insurance," wrote one user in YouTube and Twitter video posts of a Tesla scraping against a garage door frame while exiting in summon mode. "Silly feature cost me time and money."
Tesla did not respond to a request for comment but Chief Executive Elon Musk on Wednesday tweeted that there were more than 550,000 Smart Summon uses in the first few days.
Insurance claims for such incidents will go through the car owner's traditional auto coverage, said Jennifer Dukarski, a lawyer in Ann Arbor, Michigan, who represents automotive suppliers in disputes about safety and autonomous car technology.
(Production: Christina Anagnostopoulos, Mariana Sansdoval)
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