Driver using Tesla's autopilot narrowly avoids being mowed down by truck on Las Vegas highway

Passenger inside autopilot Tesla breathes huge sigh of relief as car smoothly dodges lane-swerving truck on Vegas highway and averts crash

  • Tesla’s autonomous self-driving technology managed to avoid an accident 
  • Driver was riding in 2018 Long Range sedan in Las Vegas on September 1 
  • As car kept driving, a truck is seen swerving into the Tesla driver’s lane 
  • Autopilot managed to swerve into left lane to avoid hitting the truck 

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A Tesla motorist who was driving on autopilot last week in Las Vegas shows how the autonomous vehicle managed to avoid an accident just when it appeared it was about to collide with a truck.

‘I was on Tesla autopilot driving home overtaking a truck,’ the driver told ViralHog of his trip on September 1.

The driver was in a 2018 Long Range rear-wheel drive sedan that has an ‘upgraded chip for eventual full self-driving.’

In the video, a truck is seen swerving into the Tesla driver’s lane.

A Tesla 2018 Long Range rear-wheel drive sedan was riding along a Las Vegas highway on September 1

Driver using Tesla's autopilot narrowly avoids being mowed down by truck on Las Vegas highway

The vehicle approached a large truck, which is seen on the right-hand side

Driver using Tesla's autopilot narrowly avoids being mowed down by truck on Las Vegas highway

The Tesla swerves to the left to avoid hitting the truck, which was encroaching into its lane

‘The next events happened very quickly, but I am pretty sure the vehicle jerked initially to the left.

‘Out of the corner of my eye, I saw the truck nearing my car and heard it slamming on and locking up its brakes,’ the driver said.

‘From there you can see me swerving a little too quick check the lanes for another vehicle and get back to my lane before just overtaking to get away.’

The driver added: ‘Without the autopilot avoiding the collision initially, there was no way I could have cleared the left lane fast enough to swerve safely to stop an accident.’

Driver using Tesla's autopilot narrowly avoids being mowed down by truck on Las Vegas highway

Another camera angle shows the truck (left) as it nearly hits the Tesla 

Driver using Tesla's autopilot narrowly avoids being mowed down by truck on Las Vegas highway

The vehicle’s autonomous technology managed to avoid an accident

Driver using Tesla's autopilot narrowly avoids being mowed down by truck on Las Vegas highway

‘Without the autopilot avoiding the collision initially, there was no way I could have cleared the left lane fast enough to swerve safely to stop an accident,’ the driver said

Driver using Tesla's autopilot narrowly avoids being mowed down by truck on Las Vegas highway

The driver was operating a 2018 Long Range four-door rear-wheel drive sedan like the one seen in the above stock image

There was no damage to either vehicle. The footage was captured by video mounted onto the car.

In July, Tesla founder and CEO Elon Musk said that his company is ‘very close’ to achieving complete autonomous driving technology.

‘I’m extremely confident that level 5 or essentially complete autonomy will happen and I think will happen very quickly,’ Musk said in remarks made via a video message at the opening of Shanghai’s annual World Artificial Intelligence Conference on July 9.

‘I remain confident that we will have the basic functionality for level 5 autonomy complete this year.’

Tesla is also developing new heat-projection or cooling systems to enable more advanced computers in cars, Musk said. 

Tesla, other automakers and tech companies, including Alphabet-owned Waymo and app-based ride share company Uber, are investing billions in the autonomous driving industry.

However industry insiders have said it would take time for the technology to get ready and public to trust autonomous vehicles fully.

The California-based Tesla currently builds cars with an Autopilot driver-assistance system, which still requires some human input.

Some customers, however, have reported malfunctions with the technology. 

Driver using Tesla's autopilot narrowly avoids being mowed down by truck on Las Vegas highway

Tesla CEO Elon Musk told an artificial intelligence conference in China this past July that his company is ‘very close’ to achieving complete autonomous driving technology.

Musk is seen above via a video message at the opening of Shanghai’s annual World Artificial Intelligence Conference

A federal probe was started after a 12th Tesla crash in December was believed to be tied to the auto pilot system.

The technology at the time was suspected in four fatal accidents.

The most recent deadly crash happened in March 2019 in Delray, Florida, when driver Jeremy Banner’s 2018 Tesla Model 3 slammed into a semi-truck, killing the 50-year-old driver.

National Transportation Safety Board investigators said Banner turned on the Autopilot feature about 10 seconds before the crash, and the Autopilot did not execute any evasive maneuvers to avoid the collision.

The three other fatal crashes date back to 2016.

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