Statement of NTSB Chair Jennifer L. Homendy on NHTSA Announcement on Tesla investigations:

“Today’s action by NHTSA is a positive step forward for safety,” said NTSB Chair Jennifer L. Homendy. “As we navigate the emerging world of advanced driving assistance systems, it’s important that NHTSA has insight into what these vehicles can, and cannot, do.”

The NTSB recommended last year that NHTSA “evaluate Tesla Autopilot-equipped vehicles to determine if the system’s operating limitations, the foreseeability of driver misuse, and the ability to operate the vehicles outside the intended operational design domain pose an unreasonable risk to safety; if safety defects are identified, use applicable enforcement authority to ensure that Tesla Inc. takes corrective action.” The recommendation, H-20-02, was issued after an investigation into a crash in 2018 that occurred in Mountain View, California.

“I am encouraged by NHTSA’s leadership taking action in ensuring advanced driving assistance systems function safely, and I support them in following the data from this effort as well as looking at our other recommendations to make advanced vehicles safer,” Homendy said.

The NTSB has also called on NHTSA to develop a method to verify that manufacturers of vehicles equipped with Level 2 vehicle automation incorporate system safeguards that limit the use of automated vehicle control systems to those conditions for which they were designed and for NHTSA to develop standards for driver monitoring systems.