Tesla Florida Highway Patrol Crash Added to Investigation

Tesla Model 3 crashed into a Florida Highway Patrol car, allegedly when Autopilot was engaged.

Tesla Florida Highway Patrol Crash Added to Investigation

Posted in Investigations

—  A Tesla crash investigation has been expanded to include a crash between a Tesla Model 3 and a Florida Highway Patrol car.

The Florida Highway Patrol says a 2012 Mercedes GLK350 broke down on Interstate 4 in Orlando at about 5 a.m. on August 28.

The Florida trooper stopped to assist the Mercedes which was on the side of the highway when the Tesla Model 3 slammed into the trooper's Dodge Charger. The trooper had exited his car and wasn't hit when the Tesla struck the Dodge Charger and then hit the disabled Mercedes.

The Tesla Model 3 driver said Autopilot was engaged when the vehicle hit the police car with its emergency lights activated.

The highway patrol says the Model 3 barely missed the trooper, who wasn't injured, but the Mercedes and Tesla drivers suffered minor injuries.

The crash has now been added to a federal investigation which is looking for answers as to why Tesla vehicles crash into parked emergency vehicles. Those incidents allegedly occurred when Autopilot was engaged and while the drivers were completely detached from their driving responsibilities.

Tesla / Florida Highway Patrol Crash Video

Federal Tesla Crash Investigation

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration opened its investigation in August to include about 765,000 Tesla vehicles, including 2014-2021 Tesla Model Y, Model X, Model S and Model 3 vehicles.

The drivers apparently had no clue of their surroundings because they did nothing to avoid crashing into the firetrucks and police vehicles. Those vehicles had their emergency lights activated, and many crashes occurred even though flares, road signs, cones and other warnings were in place.

NHTSA knew of 11 crashes involving emergency vehicles and the use of Tesla's Autopilot or Traffic Aware Cruise Control prior to the Florida Highway Patrol crash. Those 11 crashes allegedly caused 17 injuries and one death, but a recent New York crash may change those statistics.

Jean Louis of Cambria Heights, New York, was killed as he was trying to change a tire on the side of the Long Island Expressway in Queens. The July 26 crash occurred when Louis, 52, was hit by a Tesla Model Y SUV.

NHTSA sent investigators to the crash scene, but safety regulators haven't said if Autopilot was engaged when the crash occurred.

Tesla warns drivers to keep their hands on the wheels and their eyes on the roads if Autopilot is activated. Autopilot is a driver-assist system and regardless of its name, does not make a vehicle fully autonomous.

CarComplaints.com will update our website with results of the Tesla investigation.