The US safety agency will conduct an investigation into the Ford Mustang Mach-E accident.

NTSB to Investigate Fatal Accident Involving Ford Mustang Mach-E’s ‘BlueCruise’ Feature

The US National Transport Safety Broad (NTSB) has announced that it will be conducting an investigation into a fatal accident involving a Ford Mustang Mach-E which was equipped with the automaker’s ‘BlueCruise’ semi-autonomous driving feature. The tragic incident occurred on March 3, 2024, on I-95 in Philadelphia when the electric SUV collided with two parked vehicles, resulting in the death of the driver.

This marks the second NTSB investigation involving the Ford Mustang Mach-E and a highway fatality. The agency had previously announced that it was looking into a February 24, 2024, collision where another Mustang Mach-E crashed into a parked Honda CR-V SUV, also resulting in a death.

Chairwoman of the NTSB, Jennifer Homendy, who has been in her position since August 2021, provided written testimony for a U.S. Senate committee hearing regarding her nomination by President Joe Biden to continue in office. In her testimony, Homendy emphasized the importance of safety recommendations and advocating for transportation safety, promising to be a fierce advocate in this regard.

One of the key issues highlighted by Homendy is the lack of adoption of safety recommendations for testing ‘Level 2′ autonomous vehicles, including Tesla’s vehicles and now the Ford Mustang Mach-E, from a 2018 NTSB report. The NTSB has been pushing for stricter regulations and oversight when it comes to autonomous driving technology to ensure the safety of drivers and pedestrians.

Ford introduced the Mustang Mach-E with BlueCruise, a semi-autonomous driving system, in the US in July 2021. The automaker touted that 10 million “hands-free miles” had been driven using the system within the first year of its introduction. However, these semi-autonomous systems are not legal on Australian roads, where the Mach-E was introduced in 2023.

In response to the investigation, a Ford spokesperson stated that the company is fully cooperating with both the NTSB and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to understand the facts surrounding the March 3rd incident. This comes at a time when other automakers like Tesla and General Motors have faced scrutiny over their autonomous driving features.

Tesla, in particular, has been the subject of multiple NHTSA investigations, including a recall of two million vehicles in 2023 and probes into several deaths related to self-driving features in Tesla vehicles. General Motors’ autonomous driving department, Cruise, had its license suspended in California after one of its robotaxis was involved in a pedestrian accident.

Despite these challenges, the autonomous driving industry continues to evolve, with a self-driving Hyundai becoming the first vehicle to pass the US driving test in April 2024. As technology progresses, it is crucial for regulators and manufacturers to work together to ensure that safety remains a top priority.

In conclusion, the NTSB’s investigation into the Ford Mustang Mach-E accident underscores the importance of safety in the development and deployment of autonomous driving technology. As advancements in this field continue to unfold, it is essential for all stakeholders to prioritize safety to prevent future tragedies on the road.