Tesla owner who ‘drives’ from the backseat was arrested, then did it again – fr

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Tesla owner who ‘drives’ from the backseat was arrested, then did it again – fr


Enlarge / Interior of a Tesla Model 3.

The California Highway Patrol said it arrested a man seen riding in the back seat of a Tesla Model 3 who had no one in the driver’s seat. Param Sharma, 25, was arrested “and held in Santa Rita Prison” for reckless driving and disobeying an officer, the department said in a statement on Tuesday. Sharma was arrested after several 911 calls Monday around 6:30 p.m., reported a driverless vehicle “traveling eastbound on I-80 across the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge toward the city of Oakland,” said the police.

Sharma spent a night locked up, and he “committed the same crime shortly after being released from prison,” according to an article published yesterday by KTVU Fox 2:

Param Sharma met KTVU’s Jesse Gary in San Francisco on Wednesday afternoon, not far from his mother’s high-rise apartment. After being released from prison on two counts of reckless driving, he stopped sitting in the back seat of a Tesla with no one in the driver’s seat.

When asked if he bought a new Tesla after the previous one was impounded, he replied, “Yeah, I’m that rich. [expletive]. I am very rich. ”

“I feel safer here than up there,” Sharma also told KTVU from the right rear passenger seat.

Sharma expressed confidence in Tesla’s self-driving abilities in another interview with KTVU. “I have already been checked very hard on the brakes and the car has come to a stop. [Tesla CEO] Elon Musk really knows what he’s doing, and I think people stumble and they’re scared, ”Sharma said.

The officer who arrested Sharma “watched the individual get into the driver’s seat” and then stopped the car, police said. Police said they had previously “cited Sharma on April 27 for similar behavior”.

Sharma posted backseat videos

Sharma this week also posted videos on Instagram of himself in the backseat of a moving Tesla with an empty driver’s seat. In one video, he reads an article about himself titled “Man Seen Riding in Backseat of Driverless Tesla.” In a video posted yesterday, he says, “I just got out of jail. I have already [another] You’re here. You feel me, I’m rich like that. I came out of the pandemic a fucking millionaire, bitch. ”

A spokesperson for the California Highway Patrol told Vice’s motherboard that she was “recommending charges to the district attorney’s office” and “conducting a full investigation that will look into the possibility of previous incidents and obviously her social media. “.

Tesla’s “full autonomous driving” is not “autonomous”

Tesla states that “Autopilot is a convenient driver assistance system that is intended for use only with a fully attentive driver. “Last month, Consumer Reports revealed that Tesla’s driver monitoring system” not only failed to make sure the driver was paying attention, but it also couldn’t tell if there was a driver. over there. “

Tesla’s fully autonomous driving system has more capabilities, but “autopilot and full autonomous driving capabilities are intended for use with a fully attentive driver, who has their hands on the wheel and is ready to take over. at any time, ”says Tesla. .

Musk said he expects the company to achieve Level 5 automation – the ability to drive without human attention – by the end of this year. However, a recently released California DMV memo states that Tesla’s Autopilot software director CJ Moore told state regulators in March that Musk’s planned timeline “does not match the engineering reality. “.

Tesla has a license to “operate autonomous vehicles with emergency drivers in California,” but it does not have a license “to put fully autonomous vehicles on California roads,” an Associated article noted. Press in October 2020.

California law allows public use of self-driving cars if they meet certain conditions. But Tesla says its cars aren’t self-driving despite the names “Autopilot” and “Full Self-Driving”. A Tesla attorney told the California DMV in December 2020, “ [C]Currently neither Autopilot nor FSD Capability is an autonomous system, and currently no functionality including, either individually or collectively, is autonomous or makes our vehicles autonomous. “

NTSB investigates fatal Tesla crash

In April, two men died when a Tesla Model S crashed into a tree in a residential neighborhood in Texas. Authorities said they couldn’t find anyone in the driver’s seat, but the National Transportation Safety Board’s preliminary report cast doubt on the use of Tesla’s autopilot system. As we wrote at the time, “the NTSB says that video footage shows the occupants sitting in the front seats of the car shortly before the accident” and “the NTSB was unable to engage an autopilot component on the stretch of road where the accident occurred. NTSB investigators were able to “activate the Traffic Aware Cruise Control component of the autopilot on the section of road in question.”

“The use of the autopilot requires both the activation of the Traffic Aware cruise control and the Autosteer systems,” the NTSB report states.

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