Welcome to Tesla Motors Club
Discuss Tesla's Model S, Model 3, Model X, Model Y, Cybertruck, Roadster and More.
Register
  • TMC Podcast #17 is streaming live right now. We are discussing the new EV Tax Credits, as well as other topics. You can watch it and participate in the live chat on YouTube.

AUTOPILOT AND NEAR MISSES

I was driving home a few nights ago on the highway, it was snowing lightly, roads wet, slippery, on autopilot. A car merging on to the highway too aggressively lost control and spun out, darting left across lanes of traffic...a car to my right made an impressive controlled maneuver to avoid the car and I habitually tapped the brakes, took control of the wheel, trying to slow down and give space as well and we avoided the collision. My question though is this.... should I try to keep the car in autopilot when I see something like this unfolding in front of me? Will the car do a better job staying in control and avoiding the accident? I realize there might be times when I don't have time to react but this was like slow motion, could see it all playing out, we thought for sure we were crashing and I habitually took over to avoid. It was the closest call I've had in awhile and while we avoided it all I just can't stop thinking about whether I made the right call in touching that brake pedal and taking over??
 
  • Like
Reactions: Silicon Desert
I think you avoiding the accident was the right thing to do just about everyone would have taken over control at that time.
Right or wrong, that is what I do. I take over since I am never sure what the car might do or not do, but I know what I am going to do.

By the way, when I see use of the phrase "Near Miss", it reminds me of what my English teacher used to say..... they mean "Near Hit" because a near miss means there actually was a collision, yet almost wasn't. We all just laugh, but I guess technically she was right. o_O

Maybe the day will come when the car will do the right thing to try and avoid accidents, but at my age, I wonder if I will live long enough to see it. I hope so. :)
 
  • Funny
Reactions: CurtDawgMY
I'm not sure I'd have been on AP in those conditions. I tend not to use cruise control on my cars when it's wet/slippery/snowing.
That's fair and I do agree with that mindset, I guess I tend to hold Autopilot to a higher standard in general than "just" cruise control with FSD fast approaching (we'll see), the data about Autopilot being safer than a human, etc. Perhaps I should dial back my general enthusiasm and trust in the software, up to this point if I'm on the highway and it allows me to engage autopilot I'm doing it.
 
That's fair and I do agree with that mindset, I guess I tend to hold Autopilot to a higher standard in general than "just" cruise control with FSD fast approaching (we'll see), the data about Autopilot being safer than a human, etc. Perhaps I should dial back my general enthusiasm and trust in the software, up to this point if I'm on the highway and it allows me to engage autopilot I'm doing it.

For me, autopilot is for "standard conditions" - i.e. easy freeway driving, etc. And it's wonderful.
I take over whenever there are more complex situations, as I've found the computer isn't up to it, and it's literally life and death. Be smart - drive your car.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Silicon Desert
By the way, when I see use of the phrase "Near Miss", it reminds me of what my English teacher used to say..... they mean "Near Hit" because a near miss means there actually was a collision, yet almost wasn't. We all just laugh, but I guess technically she was right. o_O
One of my favorite skits of all time. Warning: Plenty of foul language.
 
  • Funny
Reactions: Silicon Desert
One of my favorite skits of all time. Warning: Plenty of foul language.
Yea that is funny. Thanks for the foul language warning. A skit mainly about misuse of the English language. He and I must have had the same teacher. :) I heard the part about using "pre" for everything. Reminds me of being in the medical business. Everything is Pre...something. Doctors say pre-diabetic or pre-hypertension. I used to say no. Everyone that isn't already diabetic or hypertensive is pre.... You mean they are borderline diabetic ;) Oh well, I am not one to be the English cop. I make just as many mistakes.

Ok, now that I have digressed from the original topic, I'll get back on the subject. I think I might have mentioned this somewhere else. There was a time recently when I thought the car was making a mistake. It suddenly moved out of the center of the lane on I80 and moved slightly over the left center line and then slowly came back. It happened before I even realized what was going on. I didn't seen any reason for that action. However, when I got home and looked at the recorded footage, I saw a woman in my right quarter panel. She was distracted by being on her phone and moving into my lane. The car reacted. it was apparent she would have scraped my car because she was well over the line and into my lane before she looked up and moved back into her lane. So, in this case, I guess the Tesla did the right thing.
 
Strongly agree. Remember all these automation are done by AI which needs to learn from a LOT of the actual scenes. And each emergency scene could be very different, far more complex than the normal driving situation.

For me, autopilot is for "standard conditions" - i.e. easy freeway driving, etc. And it's wonderful.
I take over whenever there are more complex situations, as I've found the computer isn't up to it, and it's literally life and death. Be smart - drive your car.
 
I never use Auto Pilot in wet conditions. My rationale is the car does not know wet or dry, it only knows what you have set which is the speed/distance. Also when wet, applying breaks slowly is the key even if ABS equipped vs the car applying hard braking to maintain a distance or avoid a collision. In general, there are too many dynamics to watch for when in wet conditions and I rather adjust the driving vs driving to correct the actions executed by the vehicle.
 

Products we're discussing on TMC...

About Us

Formed in 2006, Tesla Motors Club (TMC) was the first independent online Tesla community. Today it remains the largest and most dynamic community of Tesla enthusiasts. Learn more.

Do you value your experience at TMC? Consider becoming a Supporting Member of Tesla Motors Club. As a thank you for your contribution, you'll get nearly no ads in the Community and Groups sections. Additional perks are available depending on the level of contribution. Please visit the Account Upgrades page for more details.


SUPPORT TMC
Top