Tesla’s Full Self-Driving Under Fire From Safety Advocacy Group Tesla’s Full Self-Driving Under Fire From Safety Advocacy Group

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By Ronald Tech

An advocacy group known as the Dawn Project has raised serious concerns about the safety of Tesla Inc TSLA vehicles, particularly targeting the full self-driving (FSD) feature.

Founder of the Dawn Project, Dan O’Dowd, delivered a scathing evaluation of Tesla’s FSD system on CNBC’s “Power Lunch” this Tuesday.

O’Dowd’s stark assessment likened Tesla’s full self-driving to an erratic teenager behind the wheel: “The full self-driving is the problem … it tries to work on all roads, but it does so very poorly.”

Concerns Raised at a Global Stage The Dawn Project aired two ads during Super Bowl LVIII and claims that Tesla’s FSD software poses serious safety risks, even suggesting potential harm to children and disregarding traffic signals.

According to O’Dowd, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has expressed outrage over these findings but lacks the authority to compel Tesla to institute necessary changes.

Tesla, allegedly, has been able to evade accountability for deaths related to full self-driving by pointing to a provision in its vehicle manuals about the system’s exclusive use on highways, a detail many consumers overlook, as O’Dowd pointed out.

“Most people didn’t read that paragraph. They don’t know that and they use it on things which are not a freeway and many of them have crashed and died,” O’Dowd stated.

Push for Change The Dawn Project’s founder insisted that Tesla could easily prevent FSD from engaging on non-highway roads but has chosen not to make the necessary modifications. O’Dowd even suggested he could personally develop the software changes in a matter of days.

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Speaking of personal experience, O’Dowd warned, “I guarantee you if you get in a car with me and we go for a drive, at the end of it you’ll tell me, ‘This is terrible. Why is this on the road?’ … It will try to kill you, it’s amazing.” He characterized the system as worse than experimental, likening it to a hazardous, adolescent driver.

The NTSB issued a statement cautioning the Dawn Project to remove the NTSB seal from its website and refrain from using it in future commercials, disavowing any association or endorsement of the group’s work.

Photo: Shutterstock.