January 20, 2017

We recently reported on how the NHTSA claimed that Tesla was not at fault for May’s fatal incident, proving that the system was working correctly and that the driver was not paying attention for more than 7 seconds. And while this was the primary reason for doing the report, the investigators also discovered that by updating Tesla firmware to include the Autopilot assist features, incident rates are dropped by a whopping 40%.

That’s no small feat when discussing car crashes. The investigator’s Office of Defects Investigation analyzed mileage compared to airbag deployment from all Tesla vehicles from 2014 through 2016, and noticed that after the OTA update that installed the assistive technology, incidents dropped from 1.3 incidents per million miles to .8 incidents in the same range. This is substantial to say the least, as it shows that companies like Tesla are making vehicles safer all the time using updated software.

Obviously all vehicles aren’t equipped to take in software updates; most aren’t at all. Electric cars however generally are able to be improved over time, so the companies have opted to allow their computer systems to communicate with the internet and are thus able to become safer, more efficient, and even faster.

What do you think about the findings?

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