A Tesla driver using autopilot has admitted to watching a movie on his phone as his car crashed into two police vehicles that were stopped on the side of the road.
The incident occurred in Nash County, North Carolina last week when two police cars were responding to an earlier crash.
The Tesla ploughed into one police car which was then pushed into the other police and struck the officers at the scene, however according CBS17.com no injuries were reported.
“The Highway Patrol said the Tesla’s driver … said he was watching a movie on his phone while the car was on auto-pilot when the collision occurred,” CBS17.com reported.
“Thankfully no one was injured,” the Trooper Jeff Wilson of the Highway Patrol told CBS17.
“It was a simple lane closure and then suddenly death was at our footsteps,” Nash County Sheriff Keith Stone told CBS17.
Authorities said the crash showed autonomous car technology “is never going to take the place of the motoring public paying attention, not texting, not being on the phone, but focusing on … driving”.
This is the second Tesla being driven on autopilot to crash into a police car in the US in the past two months. In July, an Arizona police car was hit by a Tesla on autopilot.
Last year, the head of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) in the US said the name of autonomous car technology “has implications for what a driver understands.”
The 2019 survey by the IIHS found the name “autopilot” can create misconceptions.
“Almost half of the survey respondents indicated they would take their hands off the steering wheel, and almost 6 percent thought they could take a nap while the system was in autopilot,” the IIHS said.
MORE: Tesla news and reviews