Tesla may have said that the Autopilot technology is safer than a human driver but it seems that their own figures dispute this fact and in fact they show just how unsafe the system really is.
Following the fatal crash in May when a driver was using Autopilot, Tesla said that the death was the first over 130 million miles of driving with the Autopilot system active. They also pointed out that every 94 million miles there is a fatality in vehicles driven in the US.
The aim of this was to show that Autopilot is safer than cars that are driven by humans and perhaps if people had a vehicle with Autopilot the number of fatalities may be brought down.
Of course the statistics from Tesla have been questioned as they came from a small sample size and based on just one crash. This makes the calculations of a crash using Autopilot meaningless. Tesla also compared the crash rate of their vehicles using Autopilot to traffic rate fatalities in the US but this included cars, buses, 18 wheeled vehicles, pedestrians and bicyclists, not just cars driven by humans.
What Tesla should have been comparing against is the fatality rate for drivers of cars in the US, along with light trucks, which has been compiled by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
However if Tesla had done this then the figures wouldn’t have been in their favor as they would have revealed that the Tesla Autopilot driver fatality is four times higher than that of typical cars driven by humans.
Perhaps Tesla should make a comparison between Tesla Autopilot vehicles and Tesla vehicles driven by humans without Autopilot, it would be fairer.