Elon Musk apparently wants Teslas to fly. At least he did early last year, roughly an eternity in Tesla ideation time. The cold air thrusters he proposed for the upcoming Roadster are, if we’re being as generous as possible, improbable and a long way off. But that hasn’t stopped some current-day Teslas from attempting to take flight (albeit briefly, and unintentionally). In Columbus, Ohio, one driver had several feet of terrifying high-speed flight, caught on camera, before “landing” inside the Greater Columbus Convention Center. Perhaps “devastating crash” is more accurate than “landing,” though.
The footage of this incident was captured by cameras at the convention center and obtained through a public records request by The Columbus Dispatch, which reported on this incident in detail. The driver claims the 2020 Tesla Model S would not stop when exiting from highway SR-315 and drove at some time for around 70 mph before careening through an intersection and launching into building. The Model S ran a red light, demolished a planter, jumped three stairs, and sailed through some giant windows in a spray of dirt, glass, and sheer terror.
Inside the building, a well-placed fisheye camera captures the aftermath. The Tesla, no longer airborne but hardly slowed by the glass, shoots in from the right. A support pole catches the Tesla, causing it to spin 180 degrees, obliterating the front end but also arresting its further progress into the building. No one outside or inside the building were struck, somehow. The Columbus Dispatch notes that there were several events and lots of people further inside the center, so perhaps if the vehicle hadn’t been stopped by the pole the outcome could have been a lot worse. The driver’s condition isn’t noted in any of the reports, but there seem to have been no serious injuries to anything save the building.
That building will need upwards of $300,000 in repairs, by the way. And while NTSB initially looked into the crash, perhaps suspecting that the company’s Autopilot driver assistance system was involved, it did not pursue the matter after Tesla reported it hadn’t received any telemetry from the car indicating the vehicle was using Autopilot, the Dispatch reported. NTSB also didn’t ask local police to receive the vehicle’s “black box”—when asked by the Dispatch, the NTSB refused to explain why it made the decision and decided to not investigate further.
It seems remarkable that no one was gravely injured in this violent crash.
social experiment by Livio Acerbo #greengroundit – original source here