Tesla Wins California Autopilot Crash Trial

In a landmark decision, a California state court jury handed Tesla a massive win over a crash involving its Autopilot feature.

Per Reuters, Justine Hsu sued Tesla in 2020, alleging that her Model S swerved into a curb while Autopilot was engaged. The ensuing accident led to the airbag deploying, causing nerve damage to her face and knocking out multiple of her teeth. Per the suit, Hsu was seeking $3 million in damages.

Tesla, for its sake, denied liability for the accident and noted that Hsu was using Autopilot on city street despite a user manual warning against doing so.

The jury awarded Hsu zero damage. It also found that:

  • The airbag did not fail to perform safely.
  • Tesla did not intentionally fail to disclose facts.

This is the first trial related to a crash involving Autopilot.

After the jury decision, Tesla stocks rose around 1.3 per cent.

Although this is a massive win for Tesla, it does raise some questions for Autopilot users. Per Ed Walters, who teaches a course on autonomous vehicles at Georgetown Law,

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 and Tesla is not a self-driving system.

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About Scott Nordlund 1632 Articles
Originally from the West Coast, Scott is an avid writer & EV enthusiast now living in Ottawa. He holds a MA in Political Science and once played professional football in the German Football League. Email scott@driveteslacanada.ca