Tesla’s in-car gaming will be investigated by a US safety agency

Image credit: Polygon

In the United States, an investigation into more than half a million Tesla cars with touchscreens has been initiated.

It comes after a client expressed dissatisfaction with the ability to play games while driving.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in the United States is looking into 580,000 Tesla Models 3, S, and X automobiles that were manufactured between 2017 and now. Tesla has not yet responded to the probe.

Passenger Play is the function in question, which allows customers to play games on their in-car touchscreen. It does say that playing while driving is only for passengers, and it asks for approval before authorising it.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Passenger Play “may distract the driver and increase the danger of a crash.”

According to the corporation, the feature has been available since December 2020. Previously, the game feature was only accessible when the vehicle was in Park mode. Distracted drivers were responsible for 3,142 road deaths in 2019, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released guidelines in 2013 advising that in-vehicle technologies be designed such that the driver cannot use them “to do intrinsically distracting secondary tasks while driving.”

Last month, Tesla owner Vince Patton of Oregon came upon a video on YouTube illustrating how drivers can use Passenger Play. After testing the feature in a car park and realising that he could play various games while driving, he filed a complaint with the NHTSA, calling it recklessly careless.

Mercedes-Benz announced a recall earlier this month due to a computer programming fault that allowed drivers to access the internet or watch television while driving.