More than two years have passed since the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) questioned the autopilot problem at electric car maker Tesla, Bloomberg reported Monday. Tesla’s silence could lead to tighter scrutiny of its self-driving technology, which allows cars to perform some driving operations in an automated manner. Autopilot is not an autopilot system. In 2017, the NTSB recommended that automakers, including Tesla, slightly reduce the performance of their systems and allow them to operate only under the driving conditions designed for them.
Although Tesla recommends using Autopilot on highways, drivers often turn on the system elsewhere.
The automaker did not immediately respond to CNET’s request for comment.
In contrast to Tesla, other automakers included in the latest hearing submitted a formal response to the NTSB proposal within 90 days. According to Bloomberg, the agency agreed that each company would submit an acceptable response, and that only Tesla had not engaged in a conversation about how to enforce safety regulations.
The NTSB plans to reconvene and discuss Autopilot’s role in a fatal accident that killed an Apple engineer on Tuesday. The Model X, driven by Apple engineer Walter Huang, crashed into a highway barrier while autopilot was starting, causing the vehicle to catch fire and eventually crashing.
Tesla has released an update to Autopilot that includes more information to alert drivers to the road, while rival systems use technology to ensure that drivers release their hands on the road. Cadillac, for example, claims to provide a true smart driving system in Super Cruise that frees both hands. As soon as the infrared camera detects the driver’s attention, the driver can get their hands off the steering wheel completely. The system will not be used on any unmapped roads outside the U.S. highway system.