By David Shepardson
June 15 (Reuters) – Tesla Inc has reported 273 vehicle crashes involving advanced driver assistance systems such as Autopilot since July, while Honda Motor identified 90, data from U.S. auto safety regulators showed on Wednesday.
The companies made the disclosures to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) after the regulator issued an order in June 2021 requiring automakers and technology companies to immediately report all accidents. involving advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) and vehicles equipped with road-proven automated driving systems.
Of the 392 total accidents involving ADAS reported by a dozen automakers, six deaths and five serious injuries were reported.
NHTSA said Waymo, the self-driving car unit of Alphabet Inc., reported 62 crashes involving vehicles with automated driving systems, while General Motors’ Cruise had 23.
NHTSA said the data has already been used to trigger investigations and recalls and helped inform existing defect investigations. The agency did not immediately identify who was at fault in the crashes and will release more detailed information on individual incidents later on Wednesday.
The agency emphasized that individual automakers track crashes in different ways and discouraged performance comparisons between automakers in part because there are no comprehensive metrics on the breadth of use of each system.
The agency said that of the 130 reported crashes involving automated driving systems, 108 involved no injuries and one was a serious injury crash.
Tesla, Cruise and Waymo did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Japan’s Honda told Reuters it had found no flaws in the systems and its crash reports were based on unverified customer statements “to meet the NHTSA’s 24-hour reporting deadline.”
No other automaker reported more than 10 ADAS accidents during the period.
Despite the limitations, the NHTSA said the data was essential to quickly spot potential security flaws or trends. Incidents that occur when an advanced system was activated within 30 seconds of a crash must be reported within 24 hours to the NHTSA.
“By providing NHTSA with timely and critical safety data, this will help our investigators quickly identify potential defect trends,” NHTSA Administrator Steven Cliff told reporters.
It warned that the raw number of incidents reported by manufacturer “is by itself insufficient to draw any conclusions.”
The agency plans to release new data monthly.
The NHTSA has been examining Autopilot and said last week that it was updating its probe to 830,000 Tesla vehicles with the system, a required step before it could seek a recall. The regulator had opened a preliminary assessment to measure Autopilot’s performance after a dozen accidents in which Tesla vehicles collided with stopped emergency vehicles.
Separately, the NHTSA has opened 35 special accident investigations involving Tesla vehicles in which ADAS is suspected. A total of 14 crash deaths have been reported in those Tesla investigations, including a crash in May in California that killed three people.
Tesla says Autopilot allows vehicles to automatically stop and turn within their lanes, but doesn’t make them capable of driving themselves. (By David Shepardson; Edited in Spanish by Juana Casas)