Gaming While Driving: Tesla Allows it, Mercedes Announces Recall

Days after reports emerged that Tesla allows drivers to play video games on the dashboard touch screen while vehicles are moving, Mercedes-Benz has issued a US recall for a similar issue.

The German automaker said in documents posted Friday by US regulators that the issue affected 227 vehicles and has already been fixed by updating an internal computer server.

but the fact that mercedes Recalls over concerns about distracted driving, and Tesla did not raise questions about whether federal auto safety standards are being applied equally National Highway Traffic Safety Administration,

“MB is following regulatory regulations as they are supposed to – the exact opposite of what we are seeing TeslaPhilip Koopman, professor of electrical and computer engineering at Carnegie Mellon University. If NHTSA doesn’t take action against Tesla, the agency will have one standard for Tesla and another for Mercedes and other automakers, Koopman said.

NHTSA did not directly address the double standard or Tesla, but said in a statement Friday that the federal Vehicle Safety Act prohibits manufacturers from selling vehicles that pose an unreasonable risk to safety.

“Every motor vehicle manufacturer in the United States has an equal responsibility to identify and promptly repair such safety defects in their vehicles,” the statement said.

The agency said it is assessing how automakers identify and protect distraction threats due to infotainment screen defects, misuse or intended use. NHTSA said it regularly communicates with automakers about concerns, as well as reviews consumer complaints and “the vast amount of data that companies need to submit on a regular basis can be attributed to safety risks.” Looking for evidence. If data shows that such a risk may exist, NHTSA will act immediately,” the agency said.

A message was left on Friday seeking comment from Tesla, which has disbanded its media relations department.

Mercedes said in the documents that on some 2021 and 2022 EQS and S model vehicles, drivers can access television programs and the Internet while the vehicle is traveling. The automaker said it intended to disable the features while the cars were in motion, but the recalled vehicles had incorrect computer configurations.

“If a person actively selects a function or application while driving, the driver may be distracted, increasing the risk of an accident,” the company wrote in the documents. The recalled cars have active and connected “Mercedes Me” accounts.

Mercedes wrote that there are no reports of any accidents or injuries from a problem discovered in a company vehicle in Germany.

Last month, a Tesla owner near Portland, Oregon, filed a complaint with the NHTSA that while driving, he could play video games and browse the Internet on the screen of his 2021 Tesla Model 3. The agency said Thursday that it is in communication with Tesla. About the topic.

NHTSA is already investigating why Tesla’s “Autopilot” partially automated driving system keeps crashing in stalled emergency vehicles, and it has inquired about why Tesla did not file a recall document. When it did over-the-air Internet updates in an attempt to address security problem. It is also looking into the performance of Tesla’s “full self-driving” software after receiving complaints that it nearly caused an accident.

Tesla says no one system can drive the vehicle and that drivers must be prepared to intervene at all times.

Jason Levine, executive director of the nonprofit Center for Auto Safety, said the auto industry has reached a point with infotainment screens where it must choose to “be an enabler or deterrent” of distracted driving.

“We are pleased to see Mercedes recall and repair this undue risk to everyone on the road, but would urge NHTSA to move quickly to ensure that all screen-based entertainment distractions are disabled while the vehicle is in motion. Be it, no matter the producer,” Levine said.

Mercedes is paying close attention to US safety laws after paying a $13 million (about Rs 98.46 crore) fine to NHTSA in 2019 for a series of reporting failures involving the recalled vehicles.

The automaker agreed to pay for further loopholes after the agency alleged that Mercedes was slow to report safety problems and not mailing recall notification letters quickly.

Mercedes’ US unit said at the time that it did not intentionally do anything wrong.