DETROIT — Home security camera footage shows that the owner of a Tesla got into the driver’s seat of the car shortly before a deadly crash in suburban Houston, according to a government report Monday.
But the preliminary report on the crash that killed two men doesn’t explain why police found no one behind the wheel of the car, which burst into flames after crashing about 550 feet (170 meters) from the owner’s home.
The National Transportation Safety Board said it’s still investigating the crash. An onboard data storage device in the console, however, was destroyed by fire. A computer that records air bag and seat belt status as well as speed and acceleration was damaged and is being examined at an NTSB lab.
The NTSB said it tested a different Tesla vehicle on the same road, and the Autopilot driver-assist system could not be fully used. Investigators could not get the system’s automated steering system to work, but were able to use Traffic Aware Cruise Control.