Paris Driver Sues Tesla Over Fatal Crash

Aftermath of a fatal December crash in Paris involving a Tesla Model 3

A Paris taxi driver has filed a legal complaint against electric car manufacturer Tesla, following a crash where the Tesla Model 3 he was driving killed one person.

Sarah Saldmann, lawyer for the driver, said that her client had filed a criminal complaint with public prosecutors in Versailles, alleging that Tesla had “put the lives of others in danger”.

The December crash injured 20 people as well as killing one, when the off-duty taxi driver’s Tesla ploughed through pedestrians after coming off the road.

The driver of the vehicle was insistent that it had accelerated by itself, and that attempts to use the brakes had failed. In the days following the crash the French government said that Tesla had informed them there was no indication of a technical fault.

Taxi firm G7 suspended the use of the vehicle in its fleet following the accident.

The taxi driver is currently under investigation for manslaughter but has not been charged, with a decision pending on the release of an initial report by investigators.

The report has not been published as yet, but it is possible that the involved parties may have knowledge of its conclusions. Saldmann declined to comment whether her client had made this complaint on the basis of the report’s contents.

Tesla has successfully defended itself against such allegations in the past, and makes use of extensive data collected by sensors and cameras in its vehicles to challenge claims of technical malfunction.