Jean Louis Died In Queens Car Crash With Tesla While Changing Tire On the Long Island Expressway
QUEENS, NEW YORK (August 26, 2021) – A man identified as Jean Louis has tragically died in a car accident involving a Tesla while changing a tire on the shoulder of the Long Island Expressway.
New York City police officials are saying that the victim was on his way to pick up his wife from work at a nursing home. At some point during the trip Jean Louis’s vehicle sustained a flat tire.
The victim got out of his car to change the tire and was hit by a Tesla. Firefighters and paramedics were called to the scene of the collision in order to help Jean Louis.
Sadly, he died due to the severity of his injuries. The driver of the Tesla remained at the scene and cooperated with police.
Liability In New York City Car Accidents Involving Tesla Vehicles
In 2017 alone nearly 6,000 pedestrians were killed in car accidents. Another 137,000 pedestrians were injured and were treated in emergency rooms. Most pedestrian accidents occur in urban areas, without intersections and at night. Elderly pedestrians and small children tend to be a the greatest risk of being involve in accidents. There are many factors that could potentially lead to an accident including:
- Alcohol use
- Driver distraction
- Driver fatigue
- Road conditions
All drivers in New York have a legal responsibility to scan the road ahead and avoid obstacles. According to New York Vehicle & Traffic Code Section 1146, every driver shall exercise due care to avoid hitting any bicyclist, pedestrian or domestic animal upon the roadway. Drivers that hit pedestrians in the roadway may be charged with failure to yield and subject to civil liability. Depending on the specific facts of any case liability for a car accident could extend beyond any driver.
Tesla vehicles are unique in a number of ways. They are electric vehicles and they are also capable of semi-autonomous driving. Every current Tesla in production comes equipped with a feature the company has dubbed “autopilot.” In short, the autopilot feature allows the vehicle to accelerate and decelerate depending on freeway conditions. The cars can also change lanes on their own.
But the safety of the autopilot system has been called into question after numerous reports of Tesla vehicles rear-ending stopped vehicles. As of August 2021, there have been 11 instances where a Tesla vehicle with autopilot allegedly activated subsequently crashed into an emergency vehicle. It is certainly possible that Tesla could face civil liability for such crashes through a product liability claim.
- Companies have a legal responsibility to create products / software that is reasonably safe.
- Companies must warn about the non-obvious dangers of their products.
- Autopilot software is supposed to recognize the presence of vehicles and pedestrians in the roadway.
- Tesla vehicles should take action to avoid hitting those vehicles or pedestrians.
- Despite the fact that Tesla vehicles should avoid pedestrians and other vehicles in their lane they sometimes don’t.
Proving that the software on any car was faulty or that Tesla was negligent in creating it can be a tall order. It will require a thorough investigation of any accident in particular. For starters, it should be determined in any accident involving a Tesla if autopilot mode was active at the time of the collision. Software engineers and other experts would also need to provide evidence that the software was unreasonably dangerous.
The family of any victim that died in a car accident involving a Tesla may be able to seek justice through a wrongful death claim. Damages in a civil claim can help cover lost wages, medical bills and funeral costs. Sadly, car companies will often fight extremely hard to deny any responsibility for accidents involving their vehicles. A New York City product liability attorney can examine all of the unique facts of your case and let you know what your legal options are.
Investigating A Queens Car Accident Involving A Tesla Vehicle
We at Gersowitz Libo & Korek, P.C. extend our deepest condolences to the family of Jean Louis. Any person that may have information about what happened should reach out to police. As New York personal injury attorneys we remain deeply concerned by the sharp rise in fatal car accidents in the city.
There needs to be a thorough investigation for the sake of all who have lost so much. There are also a number of questions that need to be answered. Was this Tesla in autopilot mode when the crash took place? If it was in autopilot mode did it detect the victim? If so, why didn’t it stop or take evasive action? It is our sincere hope that steps are taken to prevent similar tragedies.