A Tesla driver got a suspended license after he drunkenly fell asleep on Autopilot on the highway in the Netherlands. The police managed to safely wake him up while Autopilot was driving the vehicle unsupervised.
The police in Eemnes, a municipality and a city in the Netherlands, saw that a Tesla vehicle was strangely driving behind a slower truck even though there was no other traffic on the highway.
They decided to approach the vehicle and saw that the driver was asleep.
After attempting to stop the vehicle, the driver was finally woken up with the help of a siren.
Tesla says that drivers are required to monitor the system when on Autopilot, but it doesn’t have a way to ensure that they do beyond requiring them to “apply light torque to the steering wheel” sporadically.
In this case, the police said that the driver fell asleep with his hands on the wheel, which might have applied enough torque to stop Autopilot from bringing the vehicle to a stop due to an unresponsive driver.
It’s not the first time a Tesla driver was caught sleeping on Autopilot.
Earlier this year, a Tesla driver was caught on camera seemingly asleep on Autopilot in Southern California and just a month before, a Tesla Model S driver was pulled over and arrested by the California Highway Patrol after the police officers saw him seemingly sleeping at the wheel. It reportedly took 7 miles to stop the vehicle.