Driver Arrested For DUI, But Tesla Was In Self-Driving Mode

When it comes to avoiding a DUI, a person has many options available to them other than getting behind the wheel and hoping they don’t get pulled over. Having a designated driver is one way that a person could go. Getting a ride home using the Uber or the Lyft apps provide a viable option as well. Perhaps, one day, we will have truly automated, self-driving vehicles to get us home when we are too tired or too intoxicated to drive. While companies like Tesla and other automakers are making great strides towards self-driving vehicles, we are not quite there yet. My Voice reports on a man being pulled over for DUI while behind the wheel of his Tesla.

Alexander Samek, who is the chair of the Los Altos Planning Commission, was arrested in Palo Alto early Friday morning.

California Highway Patrol officers discovered Samek asleep at the wheel of his Tesla Model S as it drove on U.S. Highway 101. The vehicle was going 70 m.p.h.

Officers suspected that Samek had the vehicle’s driver assist mode engaged after he was unresponsive to lights and sirens. They pulled in front of Samek, gradually slowing down, which caused the Tesla to slow down as well.

The Tesla eventually came to a stop. Officers said that it took a while of knocking on his window and giving commands for Samek to wake up. Once he did, they took him to a Shell Gas Station where Samek failed a field sobriety test. He was arrested on suspicion of DUI.

Even though some vehicles, like Tesla, boast full self-driving capability, it is important for drivers to be aware that they must be in control of the vehicle at all times.

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