On Friday, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) said it will review a petition to examine 500,000 Tesla vehicles over a number of complaints about sudden vehicle acceleration.
The federal agency said it will look at the petition after having received 127 reports involving 123 unique Tesla vehicles. Out of 127 reports, 110 involve 52 injuries due to the sudden acceleration issue.
“[The petition] alleges that the subject vehicles contain a defect that can cause sudden unintended acceleration, which may result in crash and injury,” said the agency.
According to reports, a large number of Tesla vehicles sped up when drivers were parking their cars, or when using their vehicle’s driver assistance system in traffic.
On January 17, NHTSA published an edited version of the petition, according to which “Tesla vehicles experience unintended acceleration at rates far exceeding other cars on the roads” and urged “to recall all Model S, Model X and Model 3 vehicles produced from 2013 to the present”.
One of the reports described a situation where a 2015 Tesla Model S 85D in California was closed and locked when suddenly “a few moments later the vehicle started accelerating forward towards the street and crashed into a parked car.”
Another driver in Avondale said he was parking his vehicle at an elementary school when it sped up on its own and “went over a curb and into a chain-link fence”.
A few months ago, the NHTSA said it was looking into whether the carmaker should have recalled 2,000 of its electric vehicles in May instead of rolling out a new software version to fix a flaw which could have caused battery fires in Model S and Model X, which were produced between 2012 and 2019.
The agency said last week that it was investigating the Dec. 29 accident with the Tesla Model 3 that resulted in passenger’s death after the vehicle smashed into a parked fire truck in Indiana.
The National Transportation Safety Board will have a meeting on February 25 to look into the potential cause of the 2018 fatal crash of a Tesla Model X where the driver was using Autopilot at the time of the accident.