The media always talk about things they don't know about (and specially about autonomous driving)!!
They just want to make the buzz ! An ICE driver killed in an accident don't make the buzz anymore, so they never talk about it!
Well... then maybe “autopilot” wasn’t the right name. Call it “monkey-on-your-laps-co-driving”: instead of just focusing on the mistakes you and other drivers could do, you now have to additionally baby-sit a monkey while driving. L2-3 is a (bad) joke. It aims at lightening cognitive load when it is clear that you should avoid this and constantly second guess each and every “Autopilot”’s actions. How is that reducing cognitive load?
In Germany this week (hoping 18.2 is waiting for me when i get home) ... this crash is all over the news here. Surprisingly I haven’t seen it in any US general news feeds I monitor. One German news piece said the fire dept. had to go to the internet for the emergency info (assume First Responder Guide). That’s a challenge ... educating the world on responding to BEV crashes. They (mostly) know what to do in an ICE fire ...
It is entirely appropriate that accidents in Teslas are closely examined. They have new and novel modes of occurrence.
ICE cars have been crashing for 100 years. Nothing unusual to see about what happens as it's all happened before.
How many ICE cars spontaneously burst into flames days after an accident? None
How many ICE cars actively steer into accidents? Not many
Teslas aren't supposed to burst into flames quickly after an accident, but they have. Why?
In all likelihood, electric cars with driver aids like AutoPliot are far safer than ICE cars, but when they fail we need to understand why they failed and how to improve.
Probably the seminal example of this is the Uber Volvo that killed a pedestrian: many more pedestrians died that same day when hit by a car, but all the attention was on the Uber incident, precisely because the mode of occurrence is different - this is supposed to be technology where that sort of incident cannot occur.
As the saying goes, "dog bites man is not news, man bites dog is." The news reports the unusual for the most part. And it has an effect on people's perceptions of the world. Road accidents cause a lot more deaths per year than airliner crashes, but every fatal airliner crash is big news and only the most extreme road accidents get more than very local news coverage, and a lot of fatal accidents get little or no local coverage.
If fatal road accidents were covered like airliner crashes, a lot of people would be afraid to go anywhere by car.
The road accidents that do get coverage are ones with something unusual about them. The fatal Uber accident a few months back got a lot of coverage because it was different. Same thing with serious Tesla accidents. A lot of exotic sportscar accidents get at least some coverage, as do any celebrity accident.