Loading articles...

Sleeping driver of speeding Tesla on Alberta highway faces criminal charge: RCMP

Last Updated Sep 17, 2020 at 8:48 am PDT

A Tesla car with no visible driver behind the wheel is shown in this RCMP handout photo on Thursday, July 9, 2020 near Ponoka, Alta. RCMP have charged a BC man with dangerous driving after pulling over a speeding Tesla on an Alberta highway that appeared to be driving itself. The incident occurred two months ago near Ponoka in central Alberta. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, RCMP *MANDATORY CREDIT*

CALGARY — RCMP have charged a British Columbia man with dangerous driving after an officer pulled over a speeding Tesla on a central Alberta highway that appeared to be driving itself.

Mounties also say two people in the car appeared to be sleeping.

Police received a complaint about a speeding car on July 9 near Ponoka, north of Red Deer.

RCMP say the car appeared to be travelling over 140 km/h and both front seats were completely reclined and its occupants were asleep.

They say that when emergency lights were activated on the police cruiser, the Tesla accelerated up to 150 km/h.

The driver sat up and pulled over the car and was charged with speeding but, after consultation with the Crown, the dangerous driving charge was added.

Sgt. Darrin Turnbull says the driver is to appear in court in December.

He says the car wasn’t actually self-driving, but its driver-assist program can be tweaked with after market changes.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published on Sept. 17, 2020

The Canadian Press