Self-driving Tesla may be the cause of Thanksgiving Bay Bridge crash

1 min read

The U.S. government’s highway safety agency announced on Thursday it will send teams to investigate two November crashes in California and Ohio, involving Teslas that might have been running on automated driving systems. 

This is the 35th crash investigated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration where Tesla’s “Full Self-Driving” or “Autopilot” systems have likely been in use since 2016. 

Nineteen people were killed in the crashes. 

The California crash happened on Thanksgiving Day on the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge. It involved eight vehicles, closed two lanes, and caused traffic on the holiday. 

Nine people were treated for minor injuries, including a child who’s been hospitalized. 

According to the driver, the Tesla Model S was using the company’s “Full Self-Driving” software. The vehicle was traveling 55 miles per hour and unexpectedly braked and shifted into the far left lane. 

The Ohio crash occurred on November 18 near Toledo, when a Tesla Model 3 crashed into an Ohio Highway Patrol SUV. An Ohio Highway Patrol trooper and another motorist were injured in the incident. 

Tesla was asked to comment on the latest NHTSA action. 


Charlene is a Bay Area journalist who hails from the small community of Fresno. Drawing from her experience writing for her college paper, Charlene continues to advocate for free press and local journalism. She also volunteers in all the beach cleanups she can because she loves the water.