HOUSTON – Two men died after a Tesla vehicle, which authorities believed was operating without anyone in the driver’s seat, crashed into a tree on Saturday night (April 17) north of Houston, the Wall Street Journal reported.
One of the men was in the front passenger seat while the other was in the back seat of the Tesla, the newspaper reported, citing an interview with Harris County Precinct 4 Constable Mark Herman.
The vehicle was travelling at high speed along a curve before it hit a tree around 11.25pm local time, the official told the newspaper.
“Our preliminary investigation is determining – but it’s not complete yet – that there was no one at the wheel of that vehicle,” the constable was quoted as saying. “We’re almost 99.9% sure.”
Emergency responders took about four hours and about 32,000 gallons of water to put the fire out, Herman was quoted as saying.
Tesla and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Authorities were still investigating as of Sunday morning whether the front passenger air bag was deployed, the report added.