NTSB ‘unhappy’ Tesla released fatal crash data

NTSB ‘unhappy’ Tesla released fatal crash data
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The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is criticizing Tesla for disclosing information about a recent deadly crash in California. 

The safety board said that, while Tesla “has been extremely cooperative” in previous investigations, the NTSB is “unhappy” the company released information about a crash in Mountain View, Calif., that occurred on March 23.

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“The NTSB is looking into all aspects of this crash, including the driver’s previous concerns about the autopilot,” said spokesman Christopher O’Neill.

“We will work to determine the probable cause of the crash and our next update of information about our investigation will likely be when we publish a preliminary report, which generally occurs within a few weeks of completion of field work.”

The safety agency also said it needs Tesla's help "to decode the data the vehicle recorded."

The Washington Post first reported the statement from NTSB on Tesla's information disclosure.

A spokesperson for Tesla declined to comment on the board’s remark, but pointed to a company statement regarding a report that said the man who died in the crash went to the dealer for an issue about the autopilot’s function.

"We've been doing a thorough search of our service records and we cannot find anything suggesting that the customer ever complained to Tesla about the performance of Autopilot,” said a Tesla spokesperson.

“There was a concern raised once about navigation not working correctly, but Autopilot's performance is unrelated to navigation." 

ABC7News reported Friday that Tesla said the autopilot function was turned on when the Model X crashed.

"[T]he driver had about five seconds and 150 meters of unobstructed view of the concrete divider with the crushed crash attenuator, but the vehicle logs show no action was taken,” said Tesla, according to the affiliate.

The NTSB said on March 27 that it was “unclear” if the autopilot function was operating when the Tesla crashed.