Footage Shows Self-Driving Tesla Careening Straight Into Moving Train as Driver Desperately Tries to Turn Away

Near Miss

The owner of a Tesla is lucky to be alive after dramatic dash cam footage shows the vehicle, while in Full Self-Driving mode, headed straight for a moving train until the driver seemingly wrested control of the car and turned away at the last second.

The driver posted about his experience

"I have owned my Tesla for less than a year, and within the last six months, it has twice attempted to drive directly into a passing train while in FSD [full self-driving] mode," wrote the driver, who identified themselves as Craig Doty II from Camden, Ohio. "The most recent incident occurred on May 8, 2024, and I have dash cam footage from that event."

Four videos from the incident show the vehicle traveling through a foggy rural landscape, with the front-facing camera footage showing the moment when a passing train appeared up ahead and the Tesla didn't stop, even with the train crossing gate in the down position with alarm lights blinking rapidly.

Fail Safe

At the last minute, the footage shows the car veering to the right — whew! Doty survived, but a picture shows a pretty banged up Tesla with the right passenger wheel violently displaced from its normal position.

A few other forum members seemed to minimize the incident.

"You are fully responsible as the driver when FSD is engaged," one forum member replied.

It's technically true, Tesla acknowledges, that its vehicles aren't fully autonomous and require a "fully attentive driver who is ready to take immediate action at all times."

But why call their driver assistance programs Full Self-Driving and Autopilot? Perhaps CEO Elon Musk should rename them — especially after a federal investigation found the features had contributed to hundreds of accidents, some resulting in fatal and serious injuries.

That investigation prompted Tesla to update the driver assist software to address concerns from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). But the agency is concerned the software update was not sufficient and is now investigating the update.

In any case, Doty's incident with the train shows that Tesla is still gambling with people's lives.

More on Tesla: Tesla Employees "Walking on Eggshells" as Furious Musk Continues Layoffs