Family of Tesla Model X Fatality Hires Law Firm, Plans to Sue

The first preview of the Model Y

The first preview of the Model Y

The only way the accident could have happened is if Huang "was not paying attention to the road, despite the vehicle providing multiple warnings to do so, "according to a statement Tesla sent April 10 to Dan Noyes, an investigative reporter with California's ABC7 News". "The only way for this accident to have occurred is if Mr. Huang was not paying attention to the road", Tesla reportedly said in a statement.

Less than two weeks ago, the NTSB told The Washington Post that it was "unhappy" with Tesla's decision to issue statements and divulge vehicle information during the investigation.

The deadly accident took place on the morning of March 23rd near Mountain View, California. "At 70 miles per hour, that's a long time - a lot can happen in that period of time".

Mr. Musk says he is sleeping on the factory floor, as he did in Y 2016 when Tesla was struggling to produce the Model X crossover. Tesla enthusiasts are disappointed that the company has fallen behind on production goals but Tesla CEO Elon Musk assured the public on CBS Thursday morning: "You will definitely get your auto", he said.

The company showed remorse, but also chose, much like in the current situation, to defend its technology.

The family of Huang has hired the law firm of Minami Tamaki to represent it in upcoming suits to be filed against Tesla, and potentially, the company's subcontractors that helped design and build the Autopilot system. After doing a comprehensive study, NHTSA found that even the early version of Tesla Autopilot resulted in 40% fewer crashes. The company said it had opted to withdraw its status as a party to the investigation, but would continue to assist authorities.

Neither Tesla nor NHTSA has released the underlying data to support the crash-rate reduction claim.

Walter Huang, 38, was killed in the collision while Tesla's semi-autonomous Autopilot system was engaged.

Tesla said it is "extremely clear" that Autopilot requires drivers to be alert and have hands on the steering wheel.

But in a statement to ABC 7 on Tuesday evening, Tesla turned this argument around.

Tesla will no longer be able to participate in the National Transportation Safety Board investigation of a fatal crash involving a Tesla Model X after it violated the agency's rules on sharing investigative information before being vetted and confirmed.

NTSB investigations are comprehensive, independent, and thorough.

Under a such an agreement, called a party agreement, an automaker pledges to freely provide information and assistance in an investigation and, in turn, the NTSB promises to keep the company informed of the investigation's progress and findings.

Tesla delivered 8,180 Model 3s in the first three months of the year, missing analysts' average estimate for about 8,800 units. In a statement given to SlashGear, a spokesperson from the automaker accused the agency of being "more concerned with press headlines than actually promoting safety" and of being selective in what information it releases publicly. "It unequivocally makes the world safer for the vehicle occupants, pedestrians and cyclists", the company said in a recent blog post. Tesla claims you are 3.7 times less likely to be involved in a fatal accident if you've got Autopilot (which it sells as a $5,000 option).

The NTSB states that Tesla is still a part of the investigations of two other Tesla crashes involving a Model X in Lake Forest, California from August 2017 and a Model S crash near Culver City, California from January 2018.

The safety regulator said it had revoked party status in other investigations, but that it was "rare".

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