Tesla is currently under investigation as its autopilot mode caused several accidents, with the 12th one recorded on Aug. 31.

The US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration or the NHTSA has ordered the company to provide them the data regarding its Autopilot mode and how it works. It gave the company a deadline of Oct. 22.

If the automaker fails to give the Autopilot data they are seeking, and the company will be fined up to $115 million.

Tesla to Hand Over Autopilot Data to NHTSA

According to The New York Times, back in August, the NHTSA announced that it is investigating incidents wherein the Autopilot mode of the Tesla vehicle is activated and caused a crash.

One of the incidents even involved a parked first responder car, and the Tesla vehicle crashed into it despite the lights being on.

The agency cited 11 accidents since 2018, and it resulted in a total of 17 injuries and one death. However, on Aug. 31, a 12th accident happened.

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In a letter that the agency sent Tesla, the NHTSA wants detailed information on how the Autopilot system really works.

The agency wants to know how the company ensures that the drivers will still control the vehicle when the mode is on.

The agency also wants to know whether there are limits on where it can be used effectively, according to CNBC.

Federal investigators have criticized Tesla for years for not having safeguards to ensure that the drivers are keeping their hands on the steering wheel.

Earlier this year, the car company activated the camera mounted above the rearview mirror in Tesla Model 3 and Tesla Model Y vehicles to detect and alert the driver if they are inattentive while Autopilot is activated.

Also, Autopilot is only meant to be used on highways and not local roads.

Aside from the detailed Autopilot data, the NHTSA also wants to know who many vehicles Tesla has sold in the United States.

The agency wants to know every lawsuit that the company has been involved in since the distribution of its vehicles in the country, together with all the complaints that Tesla has received about the Autopilot mode from its customers.

Tesla's 12th Autopilot Accident

Tesla's Autopilot mode is becoming the company's Achilles Heel. The car company recorded another accident for one of its vehicles with the Autopilot feature.

On Aug. 31, a Tesla Model 3 in Autopilot mode crashed into a state highway patrol vehicle in Florida, according to CNN.

Fortunately, the car did not hit the state trooper heading out to help a vehicle that had broken down at the time.

In April, a Tesla S vehicle was in Autopilot mode when it crashed and caught fire in Texas.

The Autopilot mode in Tesla's cars makes some driving tasks easier because it does not require drivers to keep their eyes on the road.

A demonstration was even presented to show how easy it is for Tesla vehicles to work without a driver in the seat, which safety agencies immediately criticized.

However, the car company cautions drivers that they should still place their hands on the steering wheel and they should still maintain control.

Tesla's CEO Elon Musk stated that the Autopilot mode helps prevent accidents, and he shared statistics on Twitter to back up their claim.

However, the company's critics stated that the statistics that Musk tweeted do not have any important context, and it ignores the age of the average vehicle, which is approximately 12 years, being driven on roads.

The NHTSA stated that they constantly remind the public that no commercially available cars today are capable of driving themselves.

The agency added that every single vehicle needs a driver to be in control at all times, and all state laws hold the drivers responsible for the operation of the car.

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Written by Sophie Webster

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