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Tesla Avoid Another Wreck

Discussion in 'Autonomous Vehicles' started by DrivingRockies, Jan 29, 2017.

  1. DrivingRockies

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    Good morning!

    Yesterday I was driving to Colorado Springs. Just south of Denver, on a straight run of I-25, I was following a 1-ton construction truck that I could not see around. Follow distance was set at 7, and early warning was set as it always is in my Model X. After 20 minutes in moderate traffic, the X suddenly started a fairly moderate deceleration. No warnings came up of speed restrictions, or any errors. The next thing I saw was the car in front of the work truck swerve off the highway, and the 1-ton truck slam on its breaks, losing a box over the side of his truck.

    Who knows what my reaction time would have been without autopilot, the drivers ahead reacting late gives every vehicle behind less time to react. In this case the X brought me, my family, and the line of cars behind to a safe speed with plenty of room to spare. All starting before I could see brake lights or swerving vehicles.

    Thanks Tesla!
     
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  2. Electric Dream

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    You've highlighted an important point there. You might have reacted to it fast enough to stop your car before hitting the truck, but the driver of the car behind you and the others behind them might not and piled into the back of you.

    You see this on motorways in the UK often. Someone brakes for no apparent reason (to drivers behind) and there's a chain reaction as the following drivers have less and less time to react and brake harder and harder. Often the vehicle causing the initial sudden slowing gets away with it but a few cars back someone gets rear-ended.

    It's great that the technology now exists for the car itself to look and think more than one car ahead. I'm not (yet) an advocate of fully autonomous driving or even just autosteer, but I do think what Tesla has achieved with the radar upgrade is a big step forward.
     
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  3. Saghost

    Saghost Active Member

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    This only happens if drivers are following too closely - which most drivers do these days. Aggressive drivers will cut in if you leave a minimum safe following distance - one of the frustrations with driving on Autopilot.
     
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  4. Chopr147

    Chopr147 Active Member

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    Agree. You bring up a great point here I had not thought about. The quicker reaction of the Tesla can save motorists behind you as well. Mercedes is releasing radar like this as well now. Of course just don't try to keep it in the lane.

    One other thing. Following distance set to 7? I set mine to 2 and even that in NY is too much room :)
     
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  5. ba2002

    ba2002 Member

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    Just to offer the other side of this.

    Was driving with autopilot engaged, no one ahead of me on a well marked, clear interstate yesterday at 70 mph, car suddenly braked hard to 40mph before i could mash my foot back on the accelerator. I assume the radar "saw" something? Luckily cars behind me were far enough away they could slow down - didn't save me from dirty looks however.
     
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  6. DrivingRockies

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    Early warning (braking? I don't remember the setting name) is always set to early. I adjust distance based on conditions. That moment I had it at 7, but going through Denver traffic I have it set closer. I wonder how often most people adjust that, and between what numbers, or always leave it the same. I've used the whole range.
     
  7. Andyw2100

    Andyw2100 Supporting Member

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    Not in Upstate NY. Here in Upstate a following distance of 7 works just fine for us. New York is more than just New York City.
     
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  8. daniel

    daniel Active Member

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    Thanks for posting this, and it's great to hear how well these driver assist features work. I love my Roadster but cannot wait for my Model 3 in order to have these features.
     
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  9. Off Shore

    Off Shore Supporting Member

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    I've pasted the following distance at 7 and simply watched as aggressive drivers cut in, allowing the car to absorb the frustration. With local driving and on 1.5* cross-country trips it happens infrequently, and for the safety factor I'm willing to live with that.

    *AP1 was activated on our car in October 2015 as we were half-way through a trip.

    Pro-tip: It's even better if you change the frustration to morally-superior ridicule, as the car manages the sudden change of conditions.
     
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  10. mkjayakumar

    mkjayakumar Active Member

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    Great point. We need a new slogan something like, "A Tesla on the highway saves you and others"
     
  11. Chopr147

    Chopr147 Active Member

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    I am on Long Island but also have an upstate house. I leave mine on 2 which is enough to keep cars from cutting in......just :)

    But yea, to get there I need to go thru 2 boroughs. That's when it's on 1 !
     
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  12. EVie'sDad

    EVie'sDad Member

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    I've personally seen the radar pick up not only the truck directly in front of me, but at times even show the truck in front of that one...so it is looking further ahead, to help mitigate and avoid accidents due to errors by drivers in front of the vehicle.
     
  13. mspohr

    mspohr Active Member

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    I always keep my distance at 6 or 7.
    Life is too short to tailgate try to fight with bozos who want to get in front... let them in easily... they are usually gone in a few minutes.
     
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  14. S4WRXTTCS

    S4WRXTTCS Active Member

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    The car doesn't get the credit this time. The car didn't pick the follow distance; you did.

    If you used a follow distance of 1 the car probably would have started braking based on radar feedback from the car in front of the truck. Thereby getting the credit for the save.

    In any case I strongly feel if every car had adaptive cruise control people would stop following so closely.
     
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  15. Chopr147

    Chopr147 Active Member

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    Oh, to dream. :) Traffic would move smoothly and you would get to your destination quicker than riding the bumper in front of you :)
     
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  16. DrivingRockies

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    It did.
     
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