The UNITED states Natial Transportati Safety board at a hearing Tuesday, hit Apple for failing to implement policies that prevent employees from using smartphes at the wheel, a practice that may have saved the life of the engineer Walter Huang.
In 2018, Huang has been involved in a deadly accident in Mountain View, Calif., when the autopilot system its Tesla Model X not to recognize an obstacle, the plow the car headlg into a barrier of the freeway at 71 miles per hour. Two cars struck Huang vehicle and Tesla’s high-voltage battery has been breached, and trigger a fire. Huang has died of his injuries after being transported to a nearby hospital.
During the hearing today, the NTSB classified Huang, who was playing a game a company-issued mobile device at the time of the accident, as distracted driver, reports CNBC. Apple and Tesla are in part to blame for the engineer’s death, according to the remarks made by NTSB officials.
Tesla has been taken to task for failing to prevent the misuse of the automatic pilot, a driver-assistance functi included in its range of cars and Suv’s. The system of forward collisi warning failure of the warning system Huang to approach the barrier, nor automatic emergency braking system activated before the impact.
Bruce Landsberg, the vice-chairman of the NTSB, called Tesla Autosteer functi “entirely inadequate.” The functiality is designed to navigate tight roads and keep vehicles in their lane while traveling at highway speeds.
The automaker has been criticized for disturbing aly glaucous automated driving of the water with his autopilot and brand image. The csumers are not clear about vehicle automati of limitatis, or of n-observance of the warnings that need drivers to mitor -board systems at any time and intervene if necessary.
Tesla auto pilot is classified as a level 2 automated system, far from a theoretical level 5 auto car capable of acting as a user of the persal driver. Still, as noted NTSB Chairman Robert Sumwalt, Huang was “using level 2 of the automati, as if it was a full automati.”
Sumwalt also laid the blame Apple, saying in a statement, “The driver in this crash has been hired by Apple from the technology leader. But when it comes to recognizing the need for a company REP policy of Apple is lagging behind because they do not have such a policy.”
The comments dovetail with NTSB’s arguments turning around the respsibility of the employer. During the hearing, NTSB officials note, companies should adopt strict policies prohibiting the use of mobile phes while driving. Apple does not currently have such rules.
“We expect our employees to respect the law,” Apple said in a statement to CNBC.
Beyd the measures, the NTSB has argued a case of technological solutis as a locking mechanism that limits the access of mobile devices while a vehicle is in moti. Apple has built such capabilities in its iOS mobile operating system with a “Do Not Disturb While Driving” opti, but the feature is disabled by default.