As federal safety regulators continue to investigate the safety of Tesla’s autopilot feature, the electric car manufacturer recently recalled about 53,000 vehicles because of issues with the “rolling stop” software. When the vehicle fails to come to a complete stop at a stop sign, it increases the risk of a crash.
Meanwhile, an Arizona man has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Tesla in the Superior Court of the State of California, Santa Clara County. He blames the automaker for his wife’s death.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Tesla reported its recall of 53,822 vehicles on January 27, 2022. The recall affects the following vehicles:
The problem is the “rolling stop” feature, which was released via an over-the-air update to the affected vehicles on October 20, 2020. The vehicles had to be traveling below 5.6 miles per hour and detecting no relevant moving cars, pedestrians, or bicyclists near the intersection. The feature required drivers to opt-in for what was dubbed the “assertive” mode, but it drew negative attention on social media as it appeared to violate state laws requiring vehicles to come to a complete stop.
This drew the NHTSA’s attention. Tesla met with NHTSA staff on January 10th and January 19th, according to Reuters, to discuss the functionality of the software. On January 20th, Tesla agreed to the recall but stated it was not aware of any collisions, injuries, or fatalities related to the issue.
The automaker will perform an over-the-air software update that disables the rolling stop functionality, free of charge. It is also sending notification letters to owners on March 28, 2022. For more information, consumers can contact Tesla customers service at 1-877-798-3752.
The NHTSA opened an investigation into Tesla’s Autopilot driver assistance system last August after several crashes occurred involving Tesla models. That investigation is ongoing.