Tesla is facing new claims of cars suddenly and inadvertently accelerating after several car accidents in China, particularly one recently that resulted in the deaths of two people and several injuries. According to Electrek, earlier this year, the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) said it is looking into claims that Tesla vehicles have a defect that leads to sudden and unintended acceleration. The agency had received a petition citing 127 incidents.
Several claims of Tesla’s sudden acceleration have been made public over the years. The most publicized one involved a South Korean celebrity claiming his Model X accelerated on its own into his garage. However, in each case, including that one, Tesla claimed that the car’s log showed it was a user mistake due to pedal misapplication, meaning the driver pressed the accelerator instead of the brakes.
In one case, Electrek was able to have Tesla’s log verified by a third party and it supported the automaker’s claims that it showed the driver had hit the gas pedal. After the NHTSA investigation, Tesla issued a statement saying there are no defects in its vehicles that caused unintended acceleration. Now, Tesla is facing a similar problem in China after a Model 3 ran into a crowd in Nanchong last week resulting in two deaths and six injuries. The Tesla ran out of control and crashed into multiple cars. Tesla is reportedly working the authorities to determine what caused the accident.
But, since that crash, several other reports of unintended acceleration involving Tesla have emerged in China. Yicai Global reports that there have been four accidents involving out-of-control Tesla vehicles in China since June. In those accidents as well, Tesla has claimed the users were at fault. NHTSA has not released its results regarding its investigation yet.
Need to Continued Investigation
Considering the number of complaints that have piled up on this issue, it is important that NHTSA diligently continue its investigation to determine what is causing these sudden acceleration incidents. Sudden or unintended acceleration of vehicles poses risks not only to vehicle occupants, but also others on the roadway such as pedestrians, bicyclists and operators of other vehicles.
If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of these or other vehicles, an experienced auto defect lawyer can help you better understand your legal rights and options. You may be able to seek fair and full compensation for your injuries, damages and losses.