Police probe whether Autopilot feature was on in Tesla crash

Embattled Musk 'thoroughly reorganising' Tesla

A Tesla spokesman said: "We are deeply saddened by this accident, and we are working to establish the facts of the incident and offer our full cooperation to local authorities".

On Friday, a driver of a Tesla Model S auto told The Associated Press that the vehicle was operating in Autopilot mode when it slammed into the back of a fire truck stopped at a red light while traveling at 60 miles per hour in South Jordan, Utah.

The tech tycoon went on to praise the safety of the Model S, saying that it was "amazing" the driver only broke her ankle in the accident and that "an impact at that speed usually results in severe injury or death". The 28 year-old driver admitted to looking at her phone before the crash, despite the company's mandate that customers remain alert while using Autopilot, and not rely on the system entirely. The driver of the fire truck was evaluated for whiplash but was not checked into the hospital.

The National Transportation Safety Board said last week it was investigating a Tesla accident in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, on 8 May that killed two teenagers and injured another - the agency's fourth active probe into Tesla crashes.

Negative news and Tesla Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) seem to be going hand-in-hand in recent times, but the company still has plenty of loyalists and fans that are expecting big things from the carmaker in the future.

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Regulators are also looking into the performance of the Autopilot system in the March crash of a Tesla Model X SUV that crashed on a California highway. Now, Musk has said in the email to the Tesla staff that it was "flattening the management structure to improve communication", and cutting activities that are not "not vital to the success of our mission". He was Tesla's main technical contact with U.S. Safety Investigators.

On 2 May Musk said Tesla would conduct "a reorganisation restructuring" during May, without providing more details. "To be clear, we will continue to hire rapidly in critical hourly and salaried positions to support the Model 3 production ramp and future product development".

Witnesses said the Tesla did not brake prior to impact.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk took to Twitter to criticise media coverage of the Utah smash. It was unknown at the time of the accident whether the driver was operating on the Autopilot feature. Autopilot, a form of advanced cruise control, handles some driving tasks and warns those behind the wheel they are always responsible for the vehicle's safe operation.

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