Tesla Model 3 Autopilot feature allegedly caused fatal Colorado crash.

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Tesla Wrongful Death Lawsuit Filed Over Hans Von Ohain Crash
Tesla Model 3 Autopilot feature allegedly caused fatal Colorado crash.

— A Tesla wrongful death lawsuit alleges Colorado resident Hans Von Ohain, 33, was killed by a defective 2021 Tesla Model 3 Autopilot system.

Filed by Hans Von Ohain's wife Nora Bass, the Tesla wrongful death lawsuit alleges Tesla's Autopilot function caused the Model 3 to veer off the road, slam into a tree and burst into flames.

"Decedent Hans Von Ohain fought to regain control of the vehicle, but, to his surprise and horror, his efforts were prevented by the vehicle’s Autopilot features, leaving him helpless and unable to steer back on course." — Tesla wrongful death lawsuit

According to the Colorado State Patrol crash report (more than 400 pages), Hans von Ohain, who worked for Tesla, was driving drunk and had a blood alcohol level three times the legal limit.

The Model 3 was traveling 41 mph in a 40 mph zone, but the wrongful death lawsuit asserts his "gruesome and painful death would have been avoided" if the Tesla wasn't defective.

"Had the Autopilot features of the 2021 Tesla Model 3 operated properly, the vehicle would not have veered off the road, collided with a tree, burst into flames, and Hans Von Ohain's gruesome and painful death would have been avoided."

The Tesla wrongful death lawsuit alleges Autopilot was "deceptively marketed," especially by naming the system as "Autopilot" or “Full Self-Driving.”

The May 16, 2022, crash also involved a friend of Von Ohain's who was sitting in the Model 3 front passenger seat and was able to escape the vehicle.

The Colorado State Patrol said damage from the crash and fire (pictured above) prevented investigators from determining if Autopilot was engaged, but the Tesla Model 3 passenger says it was.

Tesla founder Elon Musk released a statement saying reports of Full Self-Driving (FSD) technology being involved are wrong because the vehicle was not equipped with FSD software.

Tesla references the disclaimer that comes with the technology:

"Autopilot, Enhanced Autopilot, and Full Self-Driving Capability are intended for use with a fully attentive driver, who has their hands on the wheel and is prepared to take over at any moment. While these features are designed to become more capable over time, the currently enabled features do not make the vehicle autonomous." — Tesla

The Hans Von Ohain Tesla wrongful death lawsuit was filed in the District Court of Clear Creek County Colorado: Nora Bass, et al., v. Tesla, Inc., et al.

The plaintiffs are represented by MLG Attorneys at Law.


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