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Screenshot of video courtesy of @WholeMarsBlog.

Autonomous Vehicles

Tesla’s FSD Beta V9 Stopped Car When Kid Suddenly Ran Out In Front Of Vehicle

People have a bad habit of running out in front of traffic. The Association for Safe International Road Travel (ASIRT) noted that 1.35 million people die in road crashes each year, with more than half of those deaths occurring among pedestrians, cyclists, and motorcyclists.

It’s not just human drivers who aren’t paying attention — pedestrians don’t at times as well. In a clear example of something that is too common, this happened to WholeMarsBlog as he was testing out Tesla FSD Beta 9. He was ready to take over if necessary, but Tesla’s latest software handled the incident very well.

“This functionality will be enabled even when driving manually. Imagine how many lives it will save over decades when it’s in every new car that’s made,” he said in a follow-up tweet. Asirt noted that in the U.S., pedestrian and bicyclist fatalities continue to rise. In one sad example, Tesla cofounder and former Tesla CTO JB Straubel recently lost his wife in this manner. She was struck when a Ford Edge crossed the double-yellow line while she was cycling and hit her head-on.

This is an all too common statistic and her death could have been prevented if the driver had been paying attention. For those wishing to pay condolence, you can donate to their foundation, which is focused on accelerating the transition to a more environmentally sustainable future.

In 2018, more pedestrians and cyclists were killed than in any year since 1990. As a pedestrian who has never owned a car, there have been times I’ve almost been a statistic. I once had a guy tell me he should have run me over — and he’d run a red light. People run red lights, jump curbs, or don’t pay attention to their speed while in parking lots. Some are cruel and incredibly selfish. This is why the work of Tesla is critical. Tesla’s #1 focus is on safety, and that focus is enabling the company to create vehicles that not only protect drivers, but also the people around them.

In another incident, Someone got out of their car and crossed in the middle of the road in front of WholeMarsBlog’s vehicle. FSD Beta 9 responded to him by stopping. As a pedestrian, I try not to run out in front of traffic and be super cautious of my surroundings. It’s really unnerving how careless people — drivers and pedestrians can be. The guy literally got out of his car and barely glanced at the oncoming traffic before crossing. What if the light WholeMarsBlog was at had been green and he’d been going at a higher speed? What if the car he was driving wasn’t a Tesla?

Fortunately for that guy, it was someone beta testing Tesla’s FSD Beta 9 instead of a driver who wasn’t paying attention or was going too fast in a regular gas car that didn’t have the advanced technology that Tesla has.


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