Update 5: Video From Immediate Aftermath Of Tesla Model X Crash, NTSB Investigation

MAR 23 2018 BY STAFF 134

A Tesla Model X caught fire after a horrific three-car crash that results in the X hitting a barrier before coming to a stop.

Lead Image Source: Ian Cull On Twitter

Image Source: Dean C Smith – Twitter (embedded below)

***UPDATE MARCH 27 – NTSB opens investigation. See embedded Tweet below:

The crash occurred on the southbound section of Highway 101 in Mountain View, California.

Update: Sadly, reports now confirm that the driver has passed away.

Below are some pictures of the scene and the wreckage (Hat tip to AnonyMouse!):

KRON 4 reports:

The driver of the Tesla was taken to a nearby hospital with major injuries, according to CHP (California Highway Patrol).

There was a total of three vehicles involved. No other injuries were reported, CHP says.

The X caught fire sometime shortly after impact. The impact appears to have mostly ripped the vehicle in two.

After the Model X hit the median, it “landed in the second left-most lane of Highway 101,” according to ABC7. It was then struck by a Mazda. An Audi was involved in the wreck too.

No other concrete details are known at this time.

Timeline of Event Via PD

Sources: KRON 4, ABC7, NBC

Categories: Crashed EVs, Tesla

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134 Comments on "Update 5: Video From Immediate Aftermath Of Tesla Model X Crash, NTSB Investigation"

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(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

I wonder what caused it to plow into the median?

The only other report I’ve ever read of batteries from a Tesla car exploding like fireworks was a case of reckless driving by a fleeing car thief, wrecking a Model S at a speed reported to be 100+ MPH. I wonder if similar excessive speed was in play here, given the fact that the car apparently plowed completely thru the safety barrels (typically filled with sand or water), to hit the concrete barrier beyond.

I certainly don’t want to “blame the victim”, especially when he is a fatality in a horrible car accident. Also, I have to wonder just what kind of person would use this tragedy to insinuate this was a failure of Tesla’s AutoSteer, as already seen in several posts here. That seems excessive even for the sort of Tesla hating troll that infests IEVs comments.

If indeed the car was going 100+ MPH, then Autopilot could not have been engaged. As I recall, it does not function above 85 MPH.

Your memory is exceedingly poor.

The FBI agent with his girl friend driving hit a tree and the battery failed so violently that the front axle (!) was sent airborne OVER other cars in the street. Of course, both died.

Another Tesla owner went down a cliff and no remains were found of him – he was so TOTALLY cremated and the few pounds of ashes totally dispersed that nothing of him was found.

How people can think these cars in ALL CASES are safer than a GEN 1 chevy Volt is beyond me.

Clearly neither logic nor critical thinking are your forte, Bill. Not to mention empathy.

I didn’t mention the Chevy Volt at all, and while Mr. Google does indicate there was a horrible accident in late 2016 involving an FBI agent, one which escaped my notice at the time, that doesn’t indicate anything wrong with my memory. My entirely correct statement was that I had read of such a thing only once before; the case of the fleeing car thief I mentioned.

It certainly would be nice if, in a discussion about a fatal tragedy, you’d put a hold on your petty (and in this thread, unprovoked) attempts at scoring points. As I recall, this isn’t the first time you’ve engaged in such callous behavior. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with my memory on that point, either.

Fancy you being horribly insulted over my totally objective factual statement.

When you go out of your way to insult anyone who makes a factual statement (not just me). Meanwhile you make just another content-less comment with no information.

I’m not trying to score points. I am surprised however that last week you asked me to comment on an electrical question – that was extremely funny since you don’t believe I know the first thing about anything, especially anything electrical. You have claimed (without proof) that you know more about Thermodynamics and Physics than I do. Of course your source authority is all that LUNA fictional stuff.

Your memory is crappy Pushi since you don’t recall arguing with SVEN (someone who I really miss for his detailed ‘Green Eye Shade’ financial Analyses) about it.

I can remember another in Europe where it also hit a tree and video showed batteries sparking and burning. I would be more concerned about the way the suspension parts broke away from the body. Broke is the big word instead of bent and pieces did not stay intact.

Thanks, Ken. I hadn’t previously read about that accident, but thanks to Mr. Google, I see that CBS News reported, in part:

The driver of a speeding Tesla electric car that crashed and burned in Indianapolis, killing her and a passenger, was too drunk to drive, according to a police report released Wednesday.

…Police haven’t yet determined how fast the car was going, but the damage suggests it was speeding.

No indication there of speeds in excess of 100 MPH. According to the report, it happened in a 35 MPH zone. It would be unusual for even a reckless driver to be speeding that fast in a 35 MPH zone, but it’s certainly not unheard of.



You wonder if “excessive speed was in play here” but find fault in anyone wondering if Tesla’s AP is to blame.

Tesla AP has a history of changing lanes when a new lane appears. In most cases, the consequences involve the car taking an exit the driver did not intend to take. In this case, there is clearly a new ‘lane’ that appears to the left of the left-most non-HOV lane just a few hundred feet before the barrier. In fact, the new lane that the Tesla wound up in is no traffic lane at all – it is intended as a divider lane between normal traffic and the HOV exit lane to the left. I think it is entirely plausible that the car was in this left-most lane and Tesla AP took the car into the barrier lane unexpectedly.

“You.. find fault in anyone wondering if Tesla’s AP is to blame.” No, I find fault in anyone jumping to the conclusion that Tesla’s AP is to blame, before the facts are in. Every. Single. Time. that there’s a report of a serious accident involving a Tesla car, the serial Tesla bashers immediately post comments asserting or insinuating that Autopilot was to blame, long before the facts are in regarding the case. “I think it is entirely plausible that the car was in this left-most lane and Tesla AP took the car into the barrier lane unexpectedly.” You can only suggest it’s “plausible” by deliberately ignoring the rather strong evidence of excessive speed. Occam’s Razor shaves in a different direction. It gets very, very tiresome seeing the same FUD over and over and over again. I’d much rather see more positive stories, such as reports where Autopilot appears to have saved someone’s life. Given the statistics reported by the NHTSA — that Tesla cars equipped with Autopilot + AutoSteer have about a 40% lower accident rate than Tesla cars without — I’d say it’s fairly certain that Autopilot + Autosteer have saved a lot more lives than they have cost!… Read more »

“You can only suggest it’s “plausible” by deliberately ignoring the rather strong evidence of excessive speed. Occam’s Razor shaves in a different direction.”

Non-sequitur anyone? So you are suggesting – by misapplying Occam’s Razor – that It is not even plausible that the car’s Autopilot is responsible for causing the car to choose a new lane that was not really a lane. It is certainly speculation on my part – but the hypothesis is based on evidence – a review of the road markings right before the barrier, and knowledge of a well documented history of AP switching lanes when when a new one (usually an exit lane) is presented. Excessive speed alone does not at all explain the root cause to my satisfaction.

In any event, we will likely know soon enough after investigators reach a conclusion. In the meantime, educated speculation in a forum is reasonable.

TwoVolts said: “It is certainly speculation on my part…” Oh no, Mr. Troll, that won’t fly. You have posted no less than 28 comments in this one single thread. In 17 of them — yes, I took the time to count — you have accused or insinuated that Tesla’s Autopilot is responsible for the accident, despite absolutely no evidence for that, and despite Occam’s Razor — that is, the most likely explanation — indicating driver error. Is it possible that after years of very few accidents, and none involving hitting a stationary barrier, a Tesla Autopilot system in a car on on a well-traveled road suddenly “decided” to steer into a stationary barrier? Is it possible that happened only after two weeks of the barrier remaining unrepaired on a well-traveled road in California, where Tesla cars are relatively common? Sure, it’s possible… in the way that it’s “possible” that NASA faked the moon landings. Either conclusion requires you to ignore the available evidence. It’s also possible — and far more likely than either of those things — that you work for a Russian troll farm. * * * * * TwoVolts also said: “I’m sorry I’ve committed the ‘grave sin’… Read more »

Good grief.


Head on over to TeslaMotorsClub.com and check out the non-stop speculation occurring there. They are doing exactly what I’m doing here.

You can accuse them ALL of being Russian trolls. So so so many trolls there with impure intentions. Go for it, Pu Pu!!!

If it turns out AP is the cause (we will see), it will be absolutely no consolation to the grieving family that Tesla AP has prevented accidents in other instances.

BTW – I am definitely not a serial Tesla Basher. I am a huge fan of Tesla, but have genuine concerns about semi-autonomous driving systems including Tesla’s AP. Anything less than full autonomy is setting people up to fail.

My heart goes out to the family of the victim in this crash, as well as those involved in the recent Uber incident.

If you don’t want to blame the victim, then don’t. Stop speculating on his driving speed and attentiveness and wait for more information.

Why is there a concrete median that suddenly appears in a useless ‘non-lane’ between the regular traffic and the HOV traffic? I don’t understand the purpose of suddenly dividing the HOV traffic from the regular traffic with a full lane that has a barrier in the middle of the lane. If it is to prevent cars from inadvertently exiting the highway via the HOV exit, it is a stupid and unsafe design.

If I had to speculate, it looks like the Tesla driver was perhaps trying to get into the HOV lane exit and didn’t go far enough to the left – instead shifting only into the barrier lane instead of the HOV lane (2 lanes over). Another disturbing possibility is that Autopilot moved into the ‘barrier lane’ when the ‘lane’ opened up a few hundred feet back.

Sky view near end of clip reveals the new lanes – the HOV exit lane and the barrier lane:

Why a deadly barrier in ‘new’ lane?

Tesla on AP gets confused and moves into exit lane unexpectedly. There are many videos documenting this behavior. Here is one (of many available) that illustrates it.


Did this possibly happen when the ‘apparent’ new lane opened up to the left?

“Tesla on AP gets confused and moves into exit lane unexpectedly. There are many videos documenting this behavior.”

…and not one single report of a Tesla car unexpectedly moving to an exit lane resulting in an accident, despite your three posts here which insinuate just that, ignoring the strong evidence of excessive speed, which is rather suggestive that the car was not under the control of Autopilot.

I understand your point – but am not convinced of excessive speed (above 85 MPH). Hitting a fixed solid barrier does not allow any transfer of momentum to the other object. It is as bad as hitting another Tesla Model X in a head on collision in which both vehicles are traveling up to 85 mph.

Again, we will know the cause soon enough.

This was a weekday late afternoon accident on a busy California metro highway. The likely traffic congestion at that time would suggest speeds of 85+ mph to be unlikely and perhaps impossible.

Correction: apparently happened during morning rush hour.

Teslarati reported last year that AP 2.0 had a 90 mph limit. I think it is likely that the car hit the retracted (useless) barrier at less than 90.

This Google maps streetview confirms a couple of things:
There were no sand barrels present to soften impact.
There isn’t the typical cross hatch pattern indicating “dont drive here”.

Given these:
Lack of either of these presents confusion to both human and AP whether there’s a lane or not.

Given the ease of liability lawsuits, there’s adequate grounds for the family to sue Caltrans.

Thanks for the link. I moved forward in the image and inspected the ‘lane’ and marked Barr. The yellow marked sign and energy absorbing panel were reportedly not in place at the time of the accident – the result of not having been replaced after a previous accident. That is unacceptable.

Regarding the role of the car, I cannot help but conclude that the driver should have noticed the barrier quickly approaching – despite the lack of a yellow marker. The apparent high speed of impact suggests no braking occurred, and that implies an inattentive driver and use of AutoPilot.

‘marked barrier’

I was waiting for a “Tesla saved my life” clip, now it turned out to be just another LL upload. Thanks Admin.

News will never cover it!

Looks like the sand-filled (?) impact attenuators on the 101 were no match for the Model X. The car kept going until it hit the blunt end of the concrete median.

Wonder if Autosteer was engaged leading up to the collision.

“Wonder if Autosteer was engaged leading up to the collision.”

I’m surprised the Tesla Thought Police (aka Pu-Pu) has not attacked you yet for daring to question whether a Tesla feature may have played a role in this tragedy.

Looks like it caught on the beginning of the median ripping the front end off. You can see in the video a metal barrier capping off the start of the concrete wall.

Guess will never see any dash cam footage since there is no dash.. Would have been interesting.. Hope the drivers survives to tell what happened..

Isn’t the cam connected to mobile network and transmitting data to mothership? It should be available to corporate then no matter what.

Anyway I’m sure the corporate will investigate the logs and they will prove 100% that Autosteer was disconnected at the time of impact. (Whole 100 ms before it, but this is redundant information).

So it must be driver’s fault.

“Isn’t the cam connected to mobile network and transmitting data to mothership?”

No. Certain data is sometimes transmitted to Tesla under certain circumstances, but certainly nothing as data-intense as a constant video stream from all of the thousands (or tens of thousands?) of Tesla cars which are on the road at all times.

Big Brother is not watching you… at least at Tesla!

“Anyway I’m sure the corporate will investigate the logs and they will prove 100% that Autosteer was disconnected at the time of impact.”

I’d almost bet money that this will prove to be correct. If AutoSteer was engaged, then it is extremely unlikely the car would have steered into the barrier. Sarcasm FAIL, dude!

Go Tesla!

Constantly uploading very dependable footage would require a lot of bandwidth, even at relatively low for. I think that it simply wouldn’t be practical with current mobile networks.

The Cadillac CT6 has an SD card jack in the TRUNK (supposedly to survive ANY front end crash), that may be configured to keep the last 12 hours of driving from ALL cameras inside and outside of the car. So some cars have this feature.

Can not see the third car anywhere.

Company releasing beta features + customers as testers = fatalities unfortunately

I have to agree with your assessment.

Serial anti-Tesla troll mental MadBro talking out his ass + other “Seeking Shorters” piling to put their financial gains ahead of the country’s need for more compelling PEVs = more desperate FUD from people who would use anything including a tragedy to try and further their propaganda.

Maybe they could release a car like the bolt with no features.

An accident like this with a bolt would have had the occupants and the car disintegrate.


“Maybe they could release a car like the bolt with no features. An accident like this with a bolt would have had the occupants and the car disintegrate.”

Teslas are remarkably well-designed for safety – there is no question there. The fact that the driver reportedly initially survived the impact is quite impressive. The point you seem to be missing here is that the ‘feature’ known as AutoPilot just MIGHT have been responsible for the fateful lane shift. IF that hypothesis is confirmed by investigators – and it is only an ‘IF’ at this point – then the “bolt (sic) with no features” would have been preferable because it would not have caused the fateful lane change.

I hope the hypothesis (of AP being at fault) is incorrect and proven wrong by investigators. Attacking the Bolt EV does not change the fact that the Tesla’s AP system is a legitimate suspect in this accident.

Once that panoramic windscreen shatters, it is stunning to see how open and out there the driver’s seat is. If the car had flipped after that collision, I doubt if anyone would have survived. The Model S design with 3 roof beams has a lot more conservative safety aspects built in than the X or the 3 with the panoramic glass in my opinion. I know that the crash tests say otherwise, but crash tests don’t test the car going airborne and crashing into concrete barriers at odd angles.

It is an SUV. And not just any SUV, it’s the one with the smallest probability to flip of all SUV’s on the road. Having said that, stupid drivers have managed to flip over even military tanks, given the right conditions.
I know of exactly one case were someone managed to flip a Tesla by hitting an ascending structure just at the right angle at high speed in a construction site. The car landed on the roof, but he and the other passenger were able to exit on their own. First move was to blame it on Autopilot, that was quickly found to have not been switched on at the time…

When car makers say “safety cage”, they need to emphasize “cage”. If the car is impossible to flip, why even have a roof beam? I don’t believe in the “Titanic can’t sink” arguments. Two of my favorite cars from a safety perspective are Volvo and Subaru. If you look at their designs, it is so apparent that they took a safety first approach. They don’t need to tell you that their cars don’t usually flip and so you don’t need to worry. They engineered the car so you don’t need to worry when it does.

Honestly, I don’t think I could manage to “not worry” if I were in any car that ended up flipping over. By all means make the cars safer in the eventuality, but I very much hope I never have to put it to the test.

“If the car is impossible to flip, why even have a roof beam?”

Your question is of course rhetorical, but there’s always the possibility of a bizarre accident. For example, the time that a semi truck carrying frozen sides of beef had an accident on an overpass, spilling the trailer’s cargo, and one of the beef carcasses fell off the overpass, hitting a car below and killing at least one person in the car.

A thought: do you trust tesla/musk to admit AP was at fault? Driver is dead. Tesla controls the data, correct?

Are you suggesting a corporation would lie?

The short answer is yes – they will admit to AP being active if it was. But then, they will blame the driver anyway for not maintaining control. Tesla makes it clear that the driver is ultimately responsible for controlling the vehicle.

This strategy will work great as a legal defense until they officially release full self driving (FSD). Then, it will get interesting when there are accidents. Tesla will not be able to blame the driver – which will certainly create some real problems that they have been able to avoid until now.

Well, well.

Another new username just pops in to attempt some more FUD.

I wonder which existing troll this is under registering under a new username?

Wrong – as usual. Get Real: You are quite pathetic. Perhaps you can ask the moderator or editor. You really need to get over your paranoia. If I wanted acceptance, I would post ‘happy’ posts – not create a fictitious user name to argue with myself on a forum that is quite dead to new traffic. As usual, you avoid the points made in the posts, and focus on your paranoid suspicions. There are no coincidences in your world – when paranoid delusions and conspiracy serve your mind better. Spend some time on TeslaMotorsClub website and you will see plenty of intelligent posts discussing the role of the faulty crash barrier as well as plenty of reasonable conjecture that AP may have played a role. There is NONE of the BS and pure ad hominem attacks from posters like you (troll this, fake user that, Russian agent, blah blah blah). Here is my advice to you: Start contributing something useful to these conversations. Make a case. Support with evidence or facts. Rinse and repeat. Here is my advice to the forum moderator (if there is one): Perhaps these forums need to be moderated to remove the accusations, ad hominem attacks,… Read more »

BTW – I said AP failure was plausible. Never said it definitely was AP. I still stand by that hypothesis as valid – until evidence proves it wrong.

Evidence is what makes or breaks a hypothesis – not the attacks of trolls who don’t like the hypothesis.


At the same time that I was noting the new username troll Tn734 with my new post and wondering which existing troll had registered a new username, right behind Trolln734 comes…..comes another relatively new username in TwoTrolls himself!

What a coincidence, I guess TwoTrolls wasn’t satisfied with his TWENTY FIVE OTHER POSTS he had up on this 2 day old thread about how it was an AP failure, blah, blah , blah. Now he has 27 posts.

He apparently still felt the need to register another username to reinforce his “Concern Trolling” about how Tesla AP is to blame.

It just goes to show you how desperate and organized the Anti-Tesla trolls have become.

I wonder if they are paid by the post?

Yep – you caught me.

Unfortunately, the Koch brothers refuse to pay me for my posts that were critical of the confusing road signage and improperly maintained crash barrier. I only get paid for the anti-Tesla posts.

Tesla stock dropped $25 today. Certainly this is a buying opportunity for you!!! Stock will surely go shooting back up once Tesla AP is absolved by the NTSB in this accident.

I’ve been saying the same thing all along.

“Once that panoramic windscreen shatters, it is stunning to see how open and out there the driver’s seat is.”

Well, removing the dash, steering wheel, and the entire front end of the car also adds a bit to how open and out there the driver’s seat is….. So there is that.

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety rates the Tesla S glass roof at “good” for structural integrity so the Tesla X roof is likely as sturdy.

“crash tests don’t test the car going airborne and crashing into concrete barriers at odd angles.”

In such an event all bets are off no matter the car.

But glass roofs are probably more dangerous. CR had a piece on them not long ago in which they discussed them shattering as a result of accumulated torsional stress. That would be my biggest fear, that one would shatter while I’m on an expressway in bad weather and cause me to lose control.

My biggest issue with them is that they add weight and raise the center of gravity, so both handling and performance are diminished. That’s probably less of an issue for a Tesla with exceptional performance and handling.

There are some close up pics of the Model X’s exposed battery pack on this Twitter account.



That Twitter account also said there were “Small explosions within the body of the Tesla.”


Thanks. Added all of these Tweets. Hat tip!

Reminds me of this crash at the 1969 Daytona 500:



Go Solid State.

Tesla can’t force IEVs to suppress this one….

ClownCIE continues his wild-assed Conspiracy Theories!

You want me to drop off some more tinfoil for you?

There is a huge problem with the claim that “tesla-pushes-back-awd-long-range-model-3-late-2018” All the evidence is actually to the contrary that Tesla has NOT changed their initial launch date for their first AWD cars getting sold to customers. The evidence to this is the vast number of very Early Reservation Holders who have posted on this site (and other sites) that their timeline for delivery has NOT changed. This is clear evidence that Tesla’s initial AWD launch has indeed NOT changed. Instead, the information we have is that some unknown number of reservation holders have seen their personal delivery estimate change. What we don’t know is why. We know it isn’t because Tesla has delayed the initial launch date of the AWD car, because not ALL delivery estimates have changed. There are a wide number of reasons why an unknown number of individuals would see their personal delivery estimates change THAT HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH THE INITIAL RELEASE DATE OR PRODUCTION!!!!!! 1) Tesla’s initial delivery estimates were overly broad and were not personalized to every reservation holder. As in giving everybody a mid-2018 date just because that was the launch target, and Tesla had no idea what conversion rates would be… Read more »

Yes, that was a case — in my opinion, a very rare case — of bad reporting in an IEVs article. No surprise it was taken down, and despite CCIE’s personal FUD campaign on the subject, I’ve seen absolutely no indication it was taken down at Tesla’s request… let alone demand.

CCIE said:

“Tesla can’t force IEVs to suppress this one….”

I can think of at least one Tesla-bashing troll that I’d love to see IEVs suppress!

Pushi, I’m surprised you would support censorship or suppression of an article by any company. It’s just wrong no mater who is doing it.

Some of the other posters here are clearly either kids or paid by Tesla, but I would have guessed you’d be more thoughtful about how bad this. Maybe soon we won’t be able to argue about which EV is better because the companies producing them will threaten legal action over any negative piece written.

Pu-pu is unpaid enforcer of Tesla Thought Police here, trying to attack & suppress anything and anybody who doesn’t worship Tesla hard enough. Censorship is his “job” and it is beyond hope to try to reason him in this aspect.

Most of us dislike the paid trolls and shorties like zzzzzzz here.

Unlike you, obviously a paid troll. I guess you are smarter in that aspect, at least you get paid for your effort.

Lmao, CCIE lamely tries to wrap his Conspiracy Theory in the mantle of free speech!

Since you are ignorant, Tesla doesn’t pay to advertise…or to post so you will have to troll harder next time you loser.

BTW, this shows the true caliber of the serial anti-Tesla trolls here when they are so desperate as to take a fatal tragedy involving one Tesla vehicle and spin it to further in order to denigrate Tesla so they can profit through shorts.

Nothing like Americans selling out their fellow Americans for $ or ideology, the rot runs deep in our society.

Get Real continues his wild-assed Conspiracy Theories!

You want me to drop off some more tinfoil for you?

Well, maybe “Get Real” is wrong. Maybe you are not a Tesla short-seller; maybe you just work for a Russian troll farm.

Since the Russians have expanded their online trolling to include all sorts of controversial subjects, not just those directly related to politics, it’s not hard to believe that some of the hardcore Tesla bashers here may be paid Russian trolls.

Either way, it’s clear your agenda here is a negative one, promoting anger and tribalism.

Concur with this assessment.

Which brand of Tribalism are we supposed to keep an eye out for?

With so many Tesla Trolls lurking about, it’s hard to tell who belongs to which faction. I should loosen my tin foil hat, at least a couple of notches.

If you have a strong stomach, you can see the serial Tesla bashing FUDsters in full cry every day, in scores or hundreds of posts to Seeking Alpha. If you have an even stronger stomach, you can see even worse on the Yahoo Finance forum.

But not all Tesla bashing is motivated by short-selling stock promotions and/or promoting the interests of Big Oil. Some of it is politically motivated. Mitt Romney even called Tesla one of President Obama’s “failures” during a debate with that President! (I’m sure most companies would love to be as big a “failure” as Tesla! 🙂 )

any company that is 15 years old, has tremendous debt, and loses more money, on more volume is a loser. Fact check please

Troll check please:

“John” repeats tired, discredited FUD promoted by anti-Tesla/EV groups like the Koch Roaches–check!

Is that you svengali? Or just another Seeking Shorters type username re-registered to lamely try and spread their FUD?

Being that “AnonyMouse” almost always trails along behind zzzzz when posting here I think that is as good a possibility as anything.

Good to see you back sven.

Get off your high horse Get FUD. You’d do the same thing if a GM plug-in was involved in a fatal accident. Luckily, GM is more responsible with the features they offer on their vehicles, and doesn’t use customers as beta testers.
RIP Joshua Brown and this poor soul.

NHTSA and Florida authorities found that Brown was killed because a truck driver who had enough THC in his blood to convict him of driving under the influence of drugs in most states, made an illegal turn in front of Brown.

They further went on to explain in detail how ALL emergency braking systems from ALL car makers perform poorly on 90 degree cross traffic emergency braking. And that it was NOT at fault in the accident. They even went further and showed how Tesla’s system cut accidents by 40% and is indeed saving lives.

You clearly need to go and actually read the reports, and stop repeating your willful ignorance.

That’s rich even for mental MadBro since he has been a carpet-bombing purveyor of anti-Tesla FUD ever since the day that Tesla got 400,000 reservations for the Model 3.

Its pretty obvious who you work for and I’m ok with GM–I currently own and operate both a 2012 Volt and a 2017 Bolt EV so you will never see me stoop to your Trumpian level regarding tragedies such as fatal accident involving a Volt or Bolt (which are very safe).

So your fake “condolences” ring a little hollow like the Republicans’ usual “thoughts and prayers” but no action for every weekly gun massacre.

The act of desperation is all yours troll as I mentioned, you and your fellow clowns seek to use a tragic death from an accident to further your agenda.

WTH is wrong with people like you?

:Get Real
Tesla corporate and their unpaid Revolutionary Guards historically had no problem throwing Tesla clients/supporters/drivers under the bus in case of accidents and blaming them for everything, fatal or not. What else do you expect now? Your appeal to human decency looks completely fake in retrospect.

By the way, this accident wasn’t reported fatal in the beginning. Only later it was announced that the driver died in hospital. R.I.P. Condolences to the relatives 🙁

BTW, I’m pretty sure that Steven Loveday and the other staff CAN speak for themselves.

“The driver of the Tesla was taken to a nearby hospital with major injuries, according to CHP (California Highway Patrol).”

That’s what is important here, not the loss of the car.

Here’s hoping the driver makes a full recovery!

Read more closely.

“Update: Sadly, reports now confirm that the driver has passed away.”

RIP Tesla driver.

OMG, troll this, troll that. This site has become such a joke and what’s sad is the people who think they are doing some good job by fighting the trolls aren’t any better than the trolls themselves. Stop feeding them you idiots.

Hopefully more info comes out so we can know what happens but that looks like a bad wreck of which excessive speed seems like it could be a factor. Condolences to the family 🙁

“Don’t feed the trolls” is a widely repeated misnomer that is not anywhere as effective as imagined, like “Don’t do drugs”.

Unfortunately the trolls will simply feed each other by riffing off each other even when ignored.

I love those threads. Like a Shriner’s convention all the guys with their funny hats and noise makers, echoing each other’s baffoonery and egging each other on.

The fact is that even though there are occasional spectacular accidents the number of accidents with Tesla’s are much fewer in number and less devastating, than legacy automobiles.
But that’s statistics, which are boring to most people.


Yup, it has even been statistically analyzed by NHTSA, and their scientific results showed a 40% improvement.

Can’t wait until the black box is recovered from the car and data collected. How fast was it going? Was Autopilot engaged? If AP then what version?
These questions will all be answered.

Not sure where they mount it but it might be damaged beyond use.

You’ll want to update this ASAP; it looks like CalTrans did NOT fix the barrier from a previous impact, thus negating it’s ability to absorb any of the impact from the Tesla. In fact, it actually caused far more damage by gutting the car during the impact.

There’s dashcam video of the scene just hours prior to this accident on TMC Forums, in addition to about a half dozen other impacts in the previous few years.

It looks like CalTrans is heavily liable for this fatality due to poor highway design, not doing anything about the known problem for years, and then not immediately fixing an energy absorber after a previous impact.

It could have been any car that hit this collapsed barrier, but it happened to be a Tesla and now the entire planet improperly/inaccurately thinks this was a Tesla issue; sad, very sad.

This definitely would change things significantly. Do you have a link to the video?

It would be interesting to see what CalTrans has to say about this, and how long they knew about it, and how long they left it unrepaired.

Definitely needs to be part of the story.

Thank you very much for this update, Mark.

Sometimes the comments are more informative than the article they’re commenting on! 🙂

It still could be a Tesla issue. The improperly maintained barrier is a crash mitigation issue – not a cause. Autopilot may have changed lanes – mistaking the barrier ‘lane’ for the proper lane.

Gotta love when fuds like twovolts come up with conspiracy theories for cars they have never driven.

He is telling stories

Hey Recoil, Yes. But I’m no ordinary FUDster. I’m a Russian troll – just ask Pu-Pu. BTW. Who’s the conspiracy theorist here? Whether I’ve driven a Tesla is irrelevant. Should members of the accident investigation team be disqualified if they have never driven a Tesla? I’m sorry I’ve committed the ‘grave sin’ of implying that Tesla’s AP “could be” at fault. We will know soon enough. If it is determined that AP steered the vehicle into the barrier lane just seconds before the crash, will you apologize? I doubt it. The attacks on anyone who questions any aspect of Tesla as FUDsters, Tesla Bashers, Tesla shorters, Russian trolls, etc. is getting old and tiresome. It’s reminiscent of Uncle Leo on Seinfeld – accusing anyone and everyone of being an anti-Semite. If you want to offer something useful here – e.g., evidence concerning this crash that I’m wrong, I’m receptive. At least Pu-Pu makes the case for excess speed which would rule out AP as a cause. This is helpful. His ad-hominem attacks are not. What is your evidence-based hypothesis? Oh that’s right, you have nothing to contribute other than regurgitating the CIA invented term “conspiracy theorist’.


Do you even know what a conspiracy is? In the case of your accusation, who are the alleged conspirators?

All you do is speculate and you wonder why people call you up.

Call him out. I think is what you are going for.
That usually indicates that you think the person in question is not relating a reliable account.
Which would be accurate.

You are correct. I’m speculating as to what may have happened. So what? Is that really a problem, or do you just enjoy complaining? What do you do here?

For what it is worth, the forum comments at TeslaMotorsClub.com regarding this tragic accident are about a thousand times more useful than the comments here.


BTW, I completely agree with everything you stated regarding poor road design and deficient barrier maintenance. However, I am not ready to absolve Tesla just yet. Let’s see what the investigation reveals.

Yes, it could have been any car. But most cars would not have self-immolated after the impact. It’s a problem faced by EVs, particular EVs with flat battery packs.

I don’t know if Tesla’s are uniquely susceptible to fires but clearly too many Tesla drivers have far too much confidence in Autopilot. There’s also a lot of Teslas on the roads, so it may only seem like they’re prone to end in a blazing inferno.

So you think ICE cars with gas tanks don’t burn in major accidents?

The numbers at this point have show that ICE cars actually burn more often than EV’s.

Stop making things up, fanboi. I never said that gassers don’t burn in accidents.

You’re exact words were “I don’t know if Tesla’s are uniquely susceptible to fires…”

This despite the fact — that’s and actual fact, not insinuation or “alternative facts” — that Tesla cars are about 3x to 5x less likely than gasmobiles to have a car fire, based on miles driven.

We have also seen no evidence that anyone has ever been killed in a Tesla car fire… unlike car fires involving cars from other auto makers. Was it you who, just the other day, tried to make a big deal out of the fact that a very few people have had their bodies burned in a Tesla car fire after they were killed in a horrible crash — like this one?

Don’t pee on our legs and then try to tell us it’s raining, Mr. Troll.

I an referring to 2 Boltz

I am*

I own a Model S. I use autopilot often. My car has NEVER crossed a lane line to change lanes on its own. If the lane line disappears, it might swerve a bit until it finds a new line.

Just as likely the driver was speeding, distracted, and not using autopilot. Autopilot is more likely to keep you in your lane, control your speed and prevent you from crashing.

People posting responses to this thread clearly have a few screws loose. The concrete barrier “suddenly appears” because the 101S HOV lane shortly thereafter becomes an overhead transition to the 85 Southbound. The barrier has to be there to keep you from driving off the edge!


For the people who say that Caltrans is responsible because an uncollapsed energy absorber may not have been in place; how soon do you think Caltrans would “legally” need to replace such a device after a previous incident? What if an accident had occurred the day before, or even that morning? Should Caltrans close the freeway to all traffic until the barrier could be repaired? What about the people traveling this freeway right after this particular accident? Should they be detoured off around this “unsafe” condition until it can be repaired? Let’s take a vote of how many drivers want their local freeway closed whenever a safety device is not fully installed and operable. Geez, use some common sense.

There are numerous posts on TMC forums indicating the barrier’s collapsible energy absorber had been compressed (useless) for at least two weeks prior.

Take a look at documentation of the condition on March 15th. Others confirm it was like this a week later and again earlier that day. See short video link below.

My opinion: these should be replaced or a substitute (sand filled barrels) should be in place within 24 hours. It should be part of the accident clear/clean up immediately afterwards for every accident.


“What if an accident had occurred the day before, or even that morning? Should Caltrans close the freeway to all traffic until the barrier could be repaired? ”

If the repair needs to occur anyway, what better time than immediately after the accident when the road is likely partially closed anyway to clear/investigate the accident? The repair is not that involved, and is performed with stocked parts. Do it immediately to minimize traffic disruption and maximize safety. Why not?

I actually agree with the immediate repair protocol. For example, if a car crashes in a motorsports race, the barriers are completely fixed before the race can be restarted. If energy absorbing barriers are deemed to be a lifesaving component of the highway, then the roadway should remain closed until they are suitably repaired. Be prepared to pay a substantially higher fuel tax (or mileage tax in the case of an EV) to properly fund this approach.

I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that Autopilot was likely on and driver not paying sufficient attention. Compounded by the fact that visibility was poor because driving into the morning sun. All this based on discussion and pictures from TMC: https://teslamotorsclub.com/tmc/threads/model-x-crash-on-us-101-mountain-view-ca.111505/page-15#post-2636807

The gore area leading up to the barrier could have been mistaken as lane markers by the autopilot and driven straight into the non-protected barrier.

This is an excellent link (pictures and discussion). Thanks for posting.

From a Model X owner: “I drove this exact route earlier this week in my Model X 100D Year 2017 with AP2 on, I was in the second lane from the left and the car started to drift left. I took over manually to get back into the lane.”

See post 122 in link:

Roy_H said:

“I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that Autopilot was likely on and driver not paying sufficient attention.”

While not impossible, that seems unlikely, for at least two reasons:

1. No car under the control of Tesla Autopilot + AutoSteer has ever steered the car into a fixed barrier at high speed

2. According to comments above, this barrier had been smashed and left unrepaired for two weeks before this accident. Is it likely that no Tesla cars under the control of Autopilot + AutoSteer had ever passed this point during those two weeks? (In fact, according to a comment above, it has been reported that at least one other Tesla car did so!)

Altho there is no longer any reason to believe the accident occurred at excessive speed, because we now know the energy-absorbing barrels were not in place, Occam’s Razor still suggests that it was a human who drove into that barrier at high speed — and not Tesla Autopilot + AutoSteer.

Ahhh!! Great!! A new Occam’s Razor argument from PuPu. This one apparently trashes your last application of Occam’s Razor.

Make sure to keep promoting your ever changing views as the proper alignment with Occam’s Razor.

Read the info from Tesla posted today. Hundreds of Teslas on Autopilot pass that point every day. The accident was so severe because the crash attenuator collapsed due to an earlier accident.
BTW- That spot on 101 has two southbound HOV lanes. The left one becomes a flyover onto southbound 85. The right one remains with 101. The driver may have tried to negotiate a last minute lane switch to stay on 101, as many people do, but failed due to road debris and the exposed crash attenuator rail.