Tesla has just beaten a lawsuit from a 2019 autopilot crash against Justine Hsu who sued in 2020. Justine Hsu had autopilot on when her car swerved and she crashed. The flaw in the lawsuit is that Tesla advises drivers not to use autopilot on city streets. Tesla argued that Justine using autopilot in the city streets is warned against in the user manual and that they aren’t liable for this crash. Hsu ended up with nerve damage and a broken jaw among other injuries but never won the lawsuit because Tesla wasn’t at fault. Reuters, a news agency company, stated that the, “Carmaker’s autopilot feature did not fail to perform safely,” to announce the failed lawsuit. Justine also claimed that the airbags malfunctioned but it was revealed in court that, “The airbags did not fail to perform safely,” according to Reuters. Tesla still has pending cases and investigations going on involving their autopilot mode crashes. The jurors decided that the crash wasn’t the cause of a software malfunction so Tesla in the end wasn’t blamed for the crash. It was said that driver distraction was to blame because Tesla never claimed that it was a fully self-driving program. Teacher of autonomous vehicles, Ed Walters states that, “This case should be a wakeup call to Tesla owners: they can’t over-rely on autopilot, and they really need to be ready to take control. Tesla is not a self-driven system.” The first few cases for something new often have similar outcomes for future cases. Reuters also states that, “Experts said they consider it a bellwether to help Tesla and other plaintiffs’ lawyers hone their strategies.” Although the case was won, it still looks bad for Tesla because people are starting to realize that Teslas aren’t fully autonomous, which is what majority of people perceive the car to be in the first place.
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