FHP Report: Deadly Tesla crash on I-75 in Gainesville caused by “human error”

On July 6, 2022, a couple from California who were driving a Tesla crashed into the back of a semi-truck trailer at a rest area near Paynes Prairie.
Published: Feb. 10, 2023 at 5:22 PM EST
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) - After a more than 6-month investigation, Florida Highway Patrol troopers say a deadly wreck on I-75 in Gainesville involving a Tesla and a semi-truck was caused by “human error.” It comes as some had suggested the crash might have been connected to Tesla’s autopilot feature.

On July 6, 2022, a couple from California, who were driving a Tesla, crashed into the back of a semi-truck trailer at a rest area near Paynes Prairie. The car was completely destroyed in the wreck and both people inside were killed.

RELATED: Two people killed after Tesla collides with semi-truck on I-75

According to Florida Highway Patrol troopers, the investigation determined the driver of the Telsa pressed the gas pedal instead of the brakes causing the vehicle to accelerate. It entered the rest stop going 60 mph, hit a curb, and collided with the parked semi-truck trailer.

The 2015 Tesla Model S did not have the company’s autopilot feature equipped. The cause of the crash is considered “human error.”

The accident happened around 2:00 p.m. when a Tesla driving into the rest area on I-75 near Paynes Prairie crashed into a Walmart tractor-trailer.

RELATED: Feds review Musk tweet about disabling driver monitoring in Teslas

“It’s been a while since this investigation started and it’s a very thorough and in-depth investigation,” said Lt. Patrick Riordian, FHP public information officer. “Unfortunately, the woman driving, as they were coming down the ramp to the rest area, unfortunately, she applied the accelerator instead of the brake.”

The law firm Morgan & Morgan was initially hired by the family of the couple to represent them in a possible wrongful death lawsuit. The law firm has not returned our requests for comment on the status of that potential litigation.

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