Elon Musk Says Tesla's Full Self-Driving Beta Is Crash-Free Now. Is He Right?

But statistically, someone crashes every 500,000 miles.
Loukia Papadopoulos

In July of 2021, Tesla finally released beta version 9 of its Full Self-Driving (FSD) system, though its update at the time warned drivers that the software "may do the wrong thing at the worst time." In the meantime, CEO Elon Musk had been tweeting about what the future will bring for FSD, stating that Tesla Vision will soon detect turn signals on other vehicles, hazard lights, police and ambulance lights, as well as hand gestures.

Then in September of 2021, Musk announced via twitter that he wanted to introduce a wider release of FSD before the month was ending. However, with Tesla's autonomous systems under a formal probe by the United States government at the time, and several infamous incidents involving the vehicles' systems on the record, some considered Musk's move a cause for worry.

That worry seems to have dissipated as Tesla shareholder Ross Gerber took to Twitter to announce that there has been no accident in the FSD Beta program over a year after its launch. Musk was quick to respond that this statement was indeed "correct."

The tweet would mean that both Musk and Gerber are denying that FSD Beta was responsible for a previous crash reported to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) by a Model Y owner. The driver complained that the system caused a crash, but no such thing was confirmed by the organization.

Should the report be untrue, it means that Tesla didn’t have an accident in millions of miles on FSD Beta. This is a truly impressive milestone as the NHTSA claims that statistically there’s an accident at least every 500,000 miles for human drivers.