Man Killed in Tesla Autopilot Crash was Watching Harry Potter

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Man Killed in Tesla Autopilot Crash was Watching Harry Potter

The 40-year-old man who was recently killed in a Tesla Autopilot crash was reportedly watching Harry Potter.

Yesterday, Tesla published a blog post on the first driver fatality while its Model S had Autopilot activated, and now the Associated Press reports that the driver was Joshua D. Brown of Canton, Ohio, who died on May 7 in Williston, Florida. Brown was tech-savvy and owned a technology company, and had just one month earlier credited his 2015 Tesla Model S for preventing a crash on an interstate highway.

According to the driver of the tractor trailer, Frank Baressi, the Tesla driver was “playing Harry Potter on the TV screen,” and was apparently driving so quickly that “he went so fast through my trailer I didn’t see him.” He also said during the interview in his home in Palm Harbor, Florida that the movie “was still playing when he died and snapped a telephone pole a quarter mile down the road.” Baressi did admit that he didn’t see the movie actually playing, but he did hear it.

SEE ALSO: Did Tesla Autopilot Just Kill Someone?

Tesla has responded saying it isn’t possible to watch videos on the Model S touchscreen.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is investigating the Tesla Autopilot system as a result of the death, and it is likely that the American electric automaker has datalogs that show just how fast the vehicle was traveling at the time of the accident.

Update: Reuters confirms that a portable DVD player was found inside the vehicle.

Discuss this story on our Tesla Forum

  • getoffme

    Time and time again, Charles Darwin was right.

  • schp007

    So he’s turn left in front of an alleged speeding vehicle and blames Harry Potter.

  • smartacus

    Now they are saying his car is unable to play movies on the screen while in motion

  • Mateusz Szkubel

    Man I don’t buy these auto-pilot-mobiles. Let the Jetsons rest in peace. I’m gonna have to buy the toughest old car in existence and just keep fixing the sucker to no end to avoid this looming phase-out of true joy and exhilaration. I refuse to be chauffeured by my car and have it decide who dies in the event of a collision based on a loss-weighing algorithm.

    My car is supposed to be the vessel that gets me there, and keeps me safe doing so. I ain’t buying a car for the greater good, I’m buying it cause I worked my ass off to save for it and I’ll be damned if it tries to abort me to save a school-bus full of children. It’s both my privilege, and my obligation to navigate those tough spots as a licensed driver, and it’s what I signed up for when I bought the thing. No matter how the incident unfolds, I will have full responsibility for the result, not a computer script.

    What better way to diffuse responsibility, promote undisciplined behavior, and dumb down America’s citizens. Our driver’s licenses issued in the states are already laughable in comparison to European licenses. The license you hold so dear and depend on is actually the equivalent of a handicapped driver’s license in other countries like Poland.

    Even auto-wiping toilets haven’t reached the level of technology to make them affordable for the average household, and yet somehow, cars that drive themselves are soon to be mandatory. If I still have to wipe my own butt because a smart-toilet is financially inaccessible to me, I’d have to be a moron to believe a self-driving car that is safe, satisfying to own, and not riddled with bugs is going to be parked in my driveway come 2018.

  • No, the tractor-trailer was turning and the driver didn’t see him. We don’t know if he blames Harry Potter because he’s unavailable for comment.

  • rsnake

    He had a portable DVD player

  • smartacus

    uh…the portable DVD player was not operating.