Tesla Model 3 rear-ends Ford, kills teenage passenger

Occurred: August 2019

A 15-year-old boy was killed when a Tesla Model 3 with its Autopilot driver-assist function enabled hit his father's Ford Explorer pick-up truck on a highway in California in August 2019. 

Javier Maldonado's father Benjamin had been trying to change lanes but was hit from behind by the Tesla. 

In July 2021, Javier's family sued Tesla and driver Romeo Lagman Yalung, accusing them of negligent product liability, motor vehicle negligence, negligent infliction of emotional distress, and wrongful death. 

Tesla blamed Yalung for the crash, saying he had been inattentive and driving at an unsafe speed.'

Operator: Romeo Lagman Yalung
Developer: Tesla
Country: USA
Sector: Automotive
Purpose: Automate steering, acceleration, braking
Technology: Driver assistance system
Issue: Accuracy/reliability; Safety
Transparency: Black box

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