NTSB Says It Is "Deeply Concerned" About Tesla Failing To Respond To Its Safety Recommendations

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by Tyler Durden
Monday, Oct 25, 2021 - 04:10 PM

The controversy about Tesla's Autopilot continues, as does the lack of action on behalf of both regulators and the company.

Today in the latest chapter of "auto safety regulators scolding Tesla, yet doing very little to rope in the company", the NTSB has reportedly issued a critical letter to Elon Musk's company for "for failing to respond to recommendations issued four years ago" about its Autopilot feature.

The National Transportation Safety Board said that it is "deeply concerned" about Tesla's failure to respond to its safety recommendations, Bloomberg reported Monday morning. 

Between the NTSB and the NHTSA, the latter of whom is in the midst of an investigation into Tesla's Autopilot, the NTSB has no regulatory authority and "relies instead on its powers of persuasion on government and industry".

The NTSB had called on Tesla and other automakers to make improvements in its automation system back in 2017. 

Last month the NTSB had also urged Tesla to address safety concerns associated with its vehicles already before expanding its self-driving features further, Bloomberg reported.

Jennifer Homendy, chairwoman of the National Transportation Safety Board, said: “Basic safety issues have to be addressed before they then expand it to other city streets and other areas.”

Homendy continued, arguing that the term ‘full self-driving’ was “misleading and irresponsible," according to Bloomberg. It's easily one of the boldest critical statements by a meaningful regulator about the "product" since its inception. 

The NTSB has been far more critical of Tesla over the last few years than the NHTSA has been. So far, the NHTSA has failed to follow the NTSB's lead. Time will tell as to whether or not the NHTSA's "formal" investigation into Autopilot could signal a shift of sentiment. 

Recall, in late summer we reported that regulators at the NHTSA in the United States had finally come to their senses and opened the long-overdue investigation. The NHTSA said the investigation includes Tesla's Model X, S and 3 for model years 2014-2021. The broad range of models and model years means that this could be the large-scale investigation that skeptics have been requesting for years, we noted.