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Tesla: Car going too fast for autopilot at time of crash

Tesla: Car going too fast for autopilot at time of crash
Posted at 11:51 AM, Nov 04, 2016

INDIANAPOLIS -- The Tesla vehicle from Thursday morning's deadly crash was traveling too fast to be on autopilot, officials with Tesla said Friday.

A Tesla spokesperson released the following statement:

“We are deeply saddened to hear that this accident involved fatalities and have been working with authorities to offer our full cooperation. Due to the damaged caused by the collision, the car was physically incapable of transmitting log data to our servers. However, had Autopilot been engaged it would have limited the vehicle’s speed to less than 35 mph on this street, which is inconsistent with witness statements and the damage sustained.”

According to release notes from Tesla, the Autopilot feature is limited to five miles above the speed limit.

The witness statements mentioned in the release are from a man who was driving nearby when he saw the crash.

"It was traveling at a very high rate of speed," Al Finnell said. "It frightened me because to be that close to it -- an explosion occurred and debris [was] going everywhere. I had to accelerate my vehicle to get out of the way from it." 

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The Tesla vehicle did pose issues for firefighters trying to put the car out. Firefighters had to use a combination of dry powder and water to get the fire out.

Case Pacer posted the following on their website Friday:

To the Case Pacer family:

Case Pacer suffered a tragic loss on Thursday, November 3, when its founder Kevin McCarthy and sales representative Casey Speckman died in a car accident after a company event. Kevin brought together a team who share his passion and vision for Case Pacer, but words cannot express the extent to which both Kevin and Casey were loved and will be missed.

Case Pacer will continue to provide and improve on the services and tools that have made it an integral part of your day-to-day legal practice; however, please take a moment to remember Casey and Kevin with us and the energy and joy they brought to this industry and our lives.

Thank you, everyone.