Picking your nose while reading a book and driving a car
Voters in Massachusetts voted for “Right to Repair” but NHTSA says no, Mercedes gets approval for level 3 driving and every Tesla Semi is recalled.
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note: this is a machine generated transcript and may not be completely accurate. This is provided for convience and should not be used for attribution.
Fred: So good. Good morning, gentlemen. Good morning, world.
Anthony: Good morning to the both of you and good afternoon to our listeners. Good evening. Good. And togan. I don’t know what that means really. I think we have to get into the follow up to a subject we’ve discussed in the past, which is the right to repair. Oh, wait, before we even start that guys. I mean, do you know what this is?
Do you know what today is?
Fred: What is today? Today’s the first day of summer. Longest. Longest daylight of the year.
Anthony: Yeah. No, that’s not what I was going for. I was going,
Michael: it’s all downhill from here.
Anthony: This is episode 5, 2 52. One year ago today we started this.
We’re applauding, but I think zoom’s cutting off some of those sounds. Hey, so congratulations to you two, to me and to our listeners. Without you, we’d be just, Three people talking into the ether. But anyway, let’s go into some excitement. The right to repair law. We’ve discussed this before. This is the.
Basically manufacturers of every devices from your phones to your car have locked them into these sealed boxes and you can’t fix them without paying some exorbitant fees. And the state of Massachusetts was the first state to say, Hey, we’re gonna. Mandate a law, you’re gonna sell products in the state of Massachusetts.
You have to have it so that people can repair things on their own with auto manufacturers that’s making it. So independent repair shops separate from your dealers can go ahead and fix your car. So as a consumer, you’re not locked into going back to your dealer every time there’s a problem and the dealer basically saying, Hey, there’s no competition.
We’re gonna charge whatever we want. We’re not gonna tell you what’s going on. We view this obviously as a very good thing. It’s great for consumers. It’s good for privacy rights, it’s good for a whole host of reasons. So Massachusetts passes this law and then a little organization called NHTSA does something which is rare that it seems to do anything at all, and they just say no, which is mind blowing to me.
Michael: Michael. It’s, NHTSA warned Massachusetts, or at least filed, I believe it was a brief of some sort about three years ago, right after the law was either passed or proposed saying, this is gonna, we’re gonna have problems here. And Massachusetts went ahead with it. And now it’s saying basically, You’re preempted.
What that means, basically is that the feds are the only folks who can regulate vehicle safety, and it’s a saying because the Massachusetts law required open remote access to vehicle data. Even though the law specified that data transmissions needed to be secure that it violates the safety Act, but because, it basically, Massachusetts is proposing that every manufacturer selling a vehicle in this state have a standardized data platform that consumers can access.
Which if you follow the podcast, standardizing anything across the auto industry is something they don’t like. They like to have their own silos. They like to monetize their own product. They don’t like cooperating with other manufacturers to produce vehicles, vehicle systems that are standardized across the industry.
And I think that, there’s a lot. There’s a lot to unpack here, right? To repair we think is super important. But also, there is a competing concern involving cybersecurity. Anytime you’re granting one group remote access or open access to their data, it basically opens up a door where bad guys can get through.
And nits is saying basically here, that. That is our prerogative to regulate in that area and when and if we ever do which is a concern here cause we don’t see NHTSA moving on cybersecurity at all. Even in the midst of probably the largest theft crisis we’ve seen in American history with the Hyundai Kia TikTok stuff.
They don’t seem to think it’s within their purview. We differ on that. But they’re saying, Massachusetts, you can’t do this. You are preempted under. Federal law from being able to force manufacturers to make this data available to consumers in Massachusetts.
Anthony: Let me understand this for a second.
Yeah. So it’s a, doesn’t think it’s their purview in the Hyundai Kia theft issues with cybersecurity there, but in this case where it gives consumers access to information and competing services, they say, Nope, this is, we say, no, you can’t do this.
Michael: That’s right. I think it’s, a lot of the, the manufacturers are gonna object to right, to repair no matter what.
Because they want to, they wanna monetize everything they can. And a, as we’ve seen, subscriptions are rising significantly in these vehicles. And they want even more control them. I mean, they want to control whether or not you can turn on your seat heater and all these little creature comforts that they’re gonna start charging you for monthly.
NSA is basically, they think there’s serious safety risks that are posed by this law. And even, Congress, Senator Markey Senator Warren have come out along with a number of others and said, what are you doing? You’re undermining state law. You this is a good thing for consumers and this is supposed to be on the side of the consumer.
Although we, disagree with that from time to time. So it’s, I think that the Massachusetts law could have been crafted in a way that. Could have allowed for consumers to have access to their data, could have allowed independent repair shops access to their data with consumers permission. But that, that’s, this is a, this was a ballot measure.
This wasn’t a law that went through, a lot of scrutiny in the legislator and staffers and had input from all sorts of stakeholders. It was basically, A law that was voted on by the people of Massachusetts. And I’m still not quite sure who wrote it, but I think they could have crafted it in a way that pacified NHTSA, while still getting consumers and independent repair shops that the things they needed.
And I’ve even seen a few state legislature, la legislators in Massachusetts suggest that’s what they’re planning to do now, is to go back and make the law. I probably, I don’t know if it would weaken it in some ways. I mean, essentially they’re trying to both guarantee that consumers and independent repair shops have access to this data can keep their repair costs down, and at the same time ensure that it’s a cyber secure system that doesn’t pose any safety risks.
I don’t think that’s easy to do. I don’t think it’s easy to craft legislation around cybersecurity around some of these things because there are some really technical issues that have to be addressed by, experts at NHTSA and elsewhere. And, congressman and senators are not cybersecurity experts.
Anthony: Wait, what?
Fred: It’s if I may point out as a citizen of Massachusetts, that we do have a couple of. Higher education institutions in Massachusetts like MIT and Harvard, that provide ready access to our legislators to get the assistance they need on drafting such legislation that would probably be preferable to citizens dressing up as aboriginal residents of this continent and throwing regulations into the Boston Harbor.
But, that’s an option too.
Anthony: Okay NHTSA, basically they write a letter to all of the general counsels of every manufacturer saying, Hey, the citizens of the state of Massachusetts voted for this. They use this little thing called democracy and representation, representative Government, and we’re saying, nah, I can’t do it.
Is this the deep state? Is this the deep state doing this? Is that what’s happening? This is the Bay State. Oh, it’s the Bay State, sorry. The Bay can be deep in sections. So as part of this both was it Subaru and so we have an article we’re linking to from MSN and I’m gonna quote from this for a little bit.
So this talks about a retired attorney who waited to buy a 2023 Subaru cross tech track. Because they wanted updated security features safety features, sorry safety features, something called Subaru starlink, which is a subscription package of digital services that include a feature to automatically call first responders in the event of a crash.
And but quoting from the article, but once she tried to activate the Stark system, nothing happened. After multiple phone calls to Subaru, she recalled somebody at Tech support said to me, why are you bothering if you’re in Massachusetts? So basically Subaru and Kia, since 2021, have basically refused to turn on starlink.
They refused these telematics systems because they know this stuff was gonna get overturned or they are actually, sorry. They knew that Massachusetts was going for this right to repair. So they said, Hey, we’re not even gonna turn this on cause we don’t want people to. Have to
Michael: have access to the stuff.
I mean, functionally they were saying, since the law hinges on telematics being available in the vehicle, telematics being the, whatever communication the vehicle uses to talk to home base. Then they aren’t triggering the Massachusetts law and so they wouldn’t be covered. So they said, okay, what we’ll do is just go ahead and, remove access to these systems for vehicles that are sold to Massachusetts consumers, which is.
A pretty draconian way to pursue things. I think particularly when, and regrettably in this case, I think because they removed automatic crash notification from those vehicles, which frankly we think should not be, one of a subscription type service and some manufacturers are offering it that I don’t know if key or.
Subaru were here. But you know, they are taking away a safety feature in those vehicles and they’re doing it without even notifying customers apparently. At least the owner that was in the article. So that’s a huge problem and The other manufacturers did not do this. I think they basically, judging by the fact that NHTSA was saying three years ago that this probably wasn’t gonna fly, they were putting all their bets on that corner, that NHTSA preemption.
I don’t, that’s just one small part in one small loss in this whole process for consumers or the folks who do have Subaru and Kias that are now not able to access their telematics systems. But, I think overall what we’re looking at here is just, it’s kind of the typical behavior pattern of the auto industry.
They. They’ll scream about hackers. Now, when there’s a bill in a state, there are a law in a state that’s forcing them to do a certain thing, but they’re also going to continue to be in DC lobbying against a federal right to repair a law that would address some of the issues they had in Massachusetts.
They’ll be lobbying against NHTSA. Putting out cybersecurity regulations and they’re gonna keep building cars with, hundreds of can buses on them that are not cyber secure and open to hackers, as we’ve talked about many times here. So I think the real lesson here is that ultimately, big auto doesn’t want anyone telling them what to do, no matter what it is.
Be cyber secure. Don’t be cyber secure. Don’t tell us what to do. We’ll take care of us. Just trust us. This is very similar to the way they’re lobbying states and feds and, Autonomous vehicles. They’re basically saying, Hey, San Francisco and Seattle, and places that, actually have these vehicles on their streets in the locality, you can’t do anything about it.
We’re gonna take this over your head to the state and we’re gonna pass some law with, antiquated definitions of operating design domain and other things that are favorable to us. And then at the same time, we’re gonna go to the feds and we’re gonna try to get you put out of the loop by parenting state law, which is exactly what they’re doing at the federal level.
So while at the same time on you, they’re trying to remove consumer access to justice with binding arbitration that takes the courts out of the System. So really, this is just typical auto industry. We don’t want anybody telling us what to do. We’re gonna fight something in one state and another.
Whether our positions are inconsistent, we don’t care as long as we come out on top.
Fred: Let me inject a couple things. Michael talked about the CAN bus. Can BUS is a controller area, network electronic bus that lets microcontrollers and devices communicate with each other. Because cars have so many different microprocessors they need to talk in some way.
The CAN BUS was designed for things like elevators and escalators areas that, that don’t really have. The need for high speed secure communications like a car does. So just by mentioning the can bus, there’s a lot implied in that about inadequate design of vehicles that’s in inherently insecure it cannot be made secure because of the way it’s designed.
Just wanted to throw that in. I also wanted to throw in this whole eyesight system and this system in the Subarus. Is an odd duck. I happen to own a Subaru and I’ve never paid for this. This is a subscription service. Since I have an iPhone, never seemed important to own to sign up with that system.
And even though I. Even though I never subscribed to it, I get a message from my local dealer whenever my windshield washer fluid gets low, but I should bring the car in for service. Really? Yeah. So it’s implemented by default to lure me into the Subaru dealer for service, even though I’ve never paid for it.
It’s a very odd duck.
Anthony: Yeah, my car, every 10,000 miles says, gotta go to the dealer. Got it. And you need service. You need service. But back to this. Right to repair. So they say, I think the cybersecurity angle that the manufacturers and nits are talking about is a red herring. By the way, red herring, a little sour cream on abl.
It sounds delicious. Because. Saying, oh, we don’t, we have to figure out the whole cybersecurity issue with that. We have to figure out all this stuff. That’s like saying remote like fless, our keyless fob entries. Oh, we have to figure out all this. They didn’t figure out the security around all this stuff.
It works. You can get in there. It’s, it would, cybersecurity being a constant moving target, as we all know from our computers, I mean, it’s, you’re never going to be able to legislate. Hey, this is how we have to make things secure because what we know today to make something secure is not what we know tomorrow because things will keep changing.
There’ll be new loopholes, there’ll be new ways in. I think it’s I think it’s setting out an impossible task that is will never
Michael: be defined. Yeah, and I wonder also, Massachusetts went about it by, Specifying that the manufacturer the thing they hate is getting together and doing a standardized data access platform.
And I’ve always wondered if maybe the standardized data access platform across all manufacturers isn’t maybe less cyber secure than having, Multiple systems operating. So you don’t have one big target sitting there, but you know, that’s, I’m not a cybersecurity expert at this moment,
Anthony: but you dress like one I.
So for our listeners in Massachusetts, contact your Congress people and yell at them. Be like, Hey, don’t give in to Nitza. Don’t give in into these people. Like really push back on this and for everybody out, everybody else in the country, let your congress people know, Hey, this is a good idea.
I don’t wanna keep overpaying and being, I don’t want my car to tell me when I have to get service for windshield washer fluid. cause look, I’m not. Automotively inclined, but even I could top off windshield wiper fluid. Probably, yeah. Oh, Michael’s giving me a slight nod. Like he could probably do it, Fred.
I think so. Yeah, not a chance. Oh. Fred’s talking, but he’s muted himself.
Fred: Sorry, I just wanted to offer my free support to those people who are gonna march on Boston Harbor to throw regulations in the water. So
Michael: if anyone needs fences, cut to make it into the harbor, he’ll be there for
Fred: you. Give us a note.
We can take the, we can take the MTA and get right in there.
Anthony: Excellent. Let’s move on to Mercedes and level three driving. How do we like that? So level three driving this is where you can stop paying attention to driving maybe, perhaps. And the car drives itself except at some last split minute split second thing where the car doesn’t know what’s happening and you have to immediately sober up and take control of the vehicle.
It’s a silly, dangerous. Dumb idea that we’ve discussed in the past, but the California Department of Motor Vehicles has approved Mercedes Benz’s automated driving system on designated highways under certain conditions without the active control of a driver. What this means is if you are on the road with a Mercedes that’s in level three driving mode, you are a Guinea pig and you don’t even know it, what world we live in.
Michael: This one’s we’ve, there’s kind of a gap here between, the vehicles we’re driving now and the avs, the autonomous vehicles we talk about. There’s a middle and automotive news talked about it this week and there article a mushy middle they call it, where drivers are supposed to take over vehicles that are operating semi autonomously.
And there’s all sorts of problems with that. When you talk about it broadly here, I think there’s a very specific set of circumstances in which the Mercedes Drive pilot is operating. It’s on freeways or divided access highways. When there’s traffic that’s slowing the whole highway down to speeds below 40 miles per hour or so.
So it’s a very narrow window in which the approvals in California and Nevada have been given to them. We, I think it’s pretty obvious why they’re having to get limited approvals because, the an there, a lot of companies have abandoned even trying level three tech. I think Google was one of the first when they were, they started out their whole autonomous Waymo adventure.
Looking into level three where drivers were going to be taking over vehicles. And they found just by observing their test drivers that it’s a serious problem. There’s all sorts of complacency that occurs that they didn’t anticipate, and drivers simply aren’t able to safely retake control of the vehicle when alerted all the time.
And that’s a big problem. In this, in the 40 mile per hour and under scenario on an interstate and traffic where you’re functionally, your car is operating in basically in advanced cruise control mode and kind of following the vehicles in front of it. I could see this tech working ultimately and maybe not posing a problem, but right now I just don’t think we have these studies and the research to back it up.
And we know people are going to do stupid things in these vehicles while they’re in traffic. I think. That it’s inevitable. I mean, the foreseeable misuse of all these systems is pretty clear, and it’s something that manufacture manufacturers should be addressing before they put the tech on the roads and not afterwards by blaming owners and consumers in court which is, the Tesla model that’s going on right before our eyes now.
There’s still a lot to be done here. I think in one of the articles I was reading on, I think Volvo and Aldi, started down this path and then said whoa, there’s some serious problems here. To the point where they just pulled out completely. So it’s something that a lot of manufacturers have shied away from.
Mercedes seems to be diving in, but. At a relatively slow pace, given the circumstances that this feature’s limited to. They’ve run around touting themselves as the first level three, which is a little silly when, you consider that they’re only approved for this very narrow set of circumstances that probably Anthony’s Toyota could handle to some extent right now with adaptive crews or something like that.
Yes, we’ll see how this develops. I don’t, I don’t know if the future is in level three. I’m not sure if humans can be trusted to operate it.
Fred: Michael, I need to ask you a question here. Yes. So you’re in a vehicle. It’s level three approved. You’re in traffic, and the car is doing its thing.
You’re picking your nose and reading a book and drinking coffee all at the same time. All of a sudden, your car’s in a crash. You report the crash to the insurance company and you say, oh, yeah I was picking my nose drinking coffee and reading a book all at the same time. The car was driving itself.
The insurance company says, guess who’s liable for this? Not the car. You are my friend. You are no longer insured. What do you think about that? Is that a, what position would the insurance company take in that situation?
Michael: I think the insurance company would probably take that position because it’s easier than them going after Mercedes for the problem.
Anthony: Your pocket aren’t as deep as Mercedes. Surprising.
Michael: And we’ve seen, some of the autonomous vehicles the fully automated or level four types that are being tested right now and, and carrying passengers in some places. We’ve seen them, support language that says, if there’s a crash that is the fault of the vehicle, we’re going to take responsibility for that.
You don’t see that from Mercedes, and we’re not seeing that from these level three systems. There’s a really, it’s not just a mushy middle from the perspective of it’s could be unsafe. It’s a mushy middle because. We really don’t have law in America that’s been formed around this topic. And we’re seeing situations where consumers are being, could be charged with manslaughter.
There’s criminal potential, criminal liability here in addition to simply replacing the car and dealing with your insurance. So yes, this is an area where that is fraught with kind of. Legal uncertainty and consumers using this technology are not only safety Guinea pigs, they’re legal Guinea pigs because they’re gonna be the first to find out what the drawbacks are when it comes to crashes that happen when level three is, when they’re using level three to basically give themselves some free time and traffic.
Fred: So lemme ask you for your opinion, Anthony. Sure. Do you think that the Mercedes salespeople are carefully informing their customers of the potential liabilities and safety hazards associated with level three operation in their brand new a hundred thousand dollars vehicle?
Anthony: Look, when I was shopping for my brand new Mercedes e q s the other day we didn’t discuss those things.
We didn’t even discuss cars. Instead, we spent a lot of time discussing watches and fabrice eggs and laughing pour as they looked inside with their dirty faces pressed up against the glass and we threw beignets at them. Because beignets are something the poor would eat. But they couldn’t get them cause their face was stuck against.
No. The answer is no.
Fred: But that’s all factual. I was asking your opinion. Oh.
Anthony: Oh my opinion. No, I don’t, I do not imagine the salespeople even know these things. But in these article from Automotive News, which I don’t think we can link to cause it’s a pay subscription thing, but there’s a good quote from friend of the show and Carnegie Mellon University Professor Phil Koopman.
He says early adopters are putting themselves at risk of criminal prosecution if the computer makes this mistake, even if they’re using it as directed. Wow. Okay. So I mean, what other consumer products can you have that you can go out and buy? You use it as directed and then it kills somebody and you’re like, oh, I guess a handgun,
Fred: I guess.
You’ve also got a quote here from Brian Rimer from my home state. Research scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, an engineer’s dream, and a plaintiff attorney’s next yacht. I like that.
Anthony: I like that too. And Michael is, it’s not too late for you to become a plaintiff attorney because I would like to be on a yacht.
Michael: liked that quote. I’m not sure how accurate it is because, right now, the way these cases are ha have gone the, the jury in California just found against someone who was using autopilot and got into a crash.
Anthony: autopilot, which is only level two.
Michael: Yeah. I mean, I don’t think the level’s really come into play here. I think there’s something, there’s. There’s something in to the, I don’t know, juries are going to be deciding this and maybe judges in some circumstances and I. There’s a little aspersion cast, I think on folks who get into a car and hit a button and think the car’s gonna drive it for them because they have better things to do, I guess, and get in a crash and someone gets hurt.
I mean, is, Mercedes Tech may not be working fully and may not have prevented the crash, but at the same time, you had someone that made a choice. Not to drive the vehicle and perhaps not to pay full attention as they should have. So I think this is an area that’s just, it’s, there may not be any yachts for quite a number of years.
If it stays as complex and, every state is going to have to work this out in its own law as well. So there’s just a lot going on here that’s gonna develop. As these vehicles come on the road, I’m not even sure if Mercedes has actually deployed this yet or if they’re just getting it approved in Nevada and California right now.
So it, some of these issues had yet to arise.
Before we move on to the Tao, Fred, I wanna correct something I just said. I did not, I was being facetious when I was casting aspersions at Beignets. I think Beignets are delicious and at least two of the three members of this podcast would agree that fried dough is incredible.
Moving on to the towel, Fred, where Fred is gonna continue on more on level three and explain really what level three is from an engineering perspective and how ridiculous this is. So take it away. You’ve
Fred: now entered the towel. Thank. Thank you, Matthew. Thanks for the interruption. I’m also going to bring in a pop quiz for Michael and Anthony, so this will be fun.
Level three, according to the Department of Transportation, is conditional automation, quote, the driving mode specific performance by an automated driving system of all aspects of the dynamic driving task, with the expectation that the human driver will respond appropriately to a request to intervene.
So this is interesting and inadequate for a lot of reasons. First is the last part of that phrase. It says, the human driver will respond appropriately to a request to intervene. It’s different than saying the human will respond appropriately when needed. Okay, so this is this. So you could have an emergency situation.
That requires your immediate response, but there’s no request to intervene. So this falls outside of the realm of what Level three actually says. So that’s a very interesting position to be in. Number two is that essentially it’s like a pilot who is in an airplane and is using an autopilot, which all commercial airplanes do.
Autopilot sometimes fail and switch themselves off, and then the pilot has to take over. So many studies have shown that it takes anywhere between 15 to 30 seconds for a highly trained pilot to take over control of an aircraft when the autopilot switches off. Now an airplane cruising at 30,000 feet will probably be.
In comfortable environment, even after 15 seconds, they generally don’t just flip over and do terrible things. They tend to drift basically from their level operating condition to some other operating condition, but they don’t vary too much. So you’ve got plenty of time typically to take over when the autopilot takes over and you can get it back on, switch it off, fly it manually, whatever you need to do.
In a car traveling at 60 miles an hour, you’re traveling at 88 feet per second. You are about two feet away from the vehicle next to you. And in we’ll say 30 seconds, which is half a minute, you can travel many hundreds of feet about a, maybe thousands, actually half a mile you can travel before you can effectively take over control of the vehicle.
If you are in fact a highly trained and alert user this is inherently hazardous. And this also assumes once again that the vehicle has detected that there’s a critical situation and that it’s going to direct you to take over. Now it happens. I had an experience last week, which bears on this. I was traveling at 60 miles an hour on the Taconic State Parkway.
When a deer decided to cross the road as deer will without much consideration for oncoming traffic, and I looked up one moment and saw a deer’s head in midair, and the next moment I saw a cracked windshield and did a lot of damage to my car. So what did I do? First of all, is I already had my hands on the wheel, so I puck it up a little bit, grabbed the wheel, and steered off the highway onto the shoulder so I could assess damage and, do the things you do after something like that.
Within milliseconds of contact. My eyesight system in my Subaru, which we discussed earlier became inoperable. Now the eyesight has two cameras and the vehicle is equipped so that it can use these two cameras to gauge distances to other objects, can perform a lot of automatic driving functions, steers left and right controls speed forward naft, so longitudinal and lateral control, which is, a lot of saying automatic driving functions in the car.
Within milliseconds, all of the senses were disabled. The rear view camera actually, or rear view mirror, actually came flying off the windshield and the entire windshield was smashed. As my background here from my colleagues who are enjoying my video background can attest. Immediately became inoperable.
So if I’m in an automatic driving car, I’m picking my nose reading a book and drinking coffee all at the same time, all of a sudden this happens. The car can no longer steer itself cause it no longer has any sensors. It’s traveling at eight, eight feet per second or going half a mile every 30 seconds. And that’s out of control.
This is a very hazardous situation, and deer strikes are common. Collisions are fairly common around the country. The New York State’s, t Taconic State Parkway, where I was driving seems to be paved with deer carcasses, which I realized after the fact should have alerted me. So I do have a personal relationship with this particular automation driving level, and I think it’s.
Incredibly stupid and hazardous for any company to put level three automation on the highway with any kind of assertion that it’s safe. That it’s safe to use. I want to reemphasize, there is no evidence anywhere in the world that any self-driving vehicle is as safe as a human. Much less safer than a human being.
So I, I think this level three is going to kill a lot of people. Fortunately my level two and a half or whatever it is in the Subaru did not kill me. From that perspective. I was very lucky and it’s really what I’ve got to say about level three. I think it’s a bad idea. If it’s, if it becomes popular, it’s a bad idea whose time has come.
That happens sometimes. I’m not a fan and I hope that really this just drops outta the market because people are astute enough to realize it’s just putting them in a way of danger.
Anthony: I think your example highlights problems with level three, level four, level five, and everything is all of those progressively allow the driver to disengage and deers will jump in front of cars.
They will disable all of these systems. So level three and above they use cameras and radars and lidars to. Find out what’s around them. So a deer comes in, disables those systems. Without a human driver, there’s no way to successfully steer that car off the road because it has no sense of where the road
Fred: You’re right, I also wanna point out that the deer pivoted around the side of the car at the moment of impact, took out the passenger side rear view mirror on the outside of the vehicle. That contains a camera which provides warning if there’s a car coming up on the right blind spot warning system.
Also, these are all associated with the lane keeping system in the car, so all of those systems were instantly disabled when that contact occurred. It’s also important to point out that’s not just deer that caused this. There are wild turkeys, there are birds in the world. There are, an unfortunate circumstances, people throwing bricks off of highways.
And another thing I’ve experienced was a chalk block falling off a truck and impact in the windshield of my car a few years ago before level three or before eyesight was even an issue. Yeah. It’s out there.
Anthony: I think the simple takeaway from this is don’t drive with Fred. Bad things happen when he is behind the wheel.
Not saying it’s your fault, it’s just saying the universe does not like you.
Fred: I’ve known that for a long time. Yeah. Getting back to. Hot wiring. No, we won’t get back to hot wiring cars. No, we won’t do that. But yeah. Okay, so now Go ahead.
Anthony: Sorry. No. I was saying I think I’ve mentioned previously on the show where I was driving my car through a blizzard.
I mean, it just happened while we were out on the road with a long trip, and then every single automated safety system just. Shut down. Radar, disabled, automatic cruise control, disabled line, lane keeping disabled. And these systems, yes, they’ll be more advanced and everything will be better in the future, but they’ll still be relying on these external systems that can be taken out by snow, by sleet and by wild about deer drinking wild Turkey.
Fred: about right? Yeah, that sounds pretty good. Yeah. And in the future, everything will be better. We know that. Okay. But we’ll still have that’s and speaking of everything in the future being better, the US Department of Transportation put out a document a while back called Preparing for the Future of Transportation, automated Vehicles 3.0.
This is still the official position of the Department of Transportation on automated vehicles. Now, there’s a tragic event in news right now. About a submarine that is apparently out of control. Hopefully the people will survive, but it’s a tragic situation in the North Atlantic. So what I’ve done in this spot, in this pop quiz is I’ve looked at some of the statements in the Vision for Safety 3.0 by the Department of Transportation.
And I’ve looked at some of the statements associated with that submarine. And I paraphrase this slightly to obscure the origin, but I’m going to ask you too, gentlemen, to identify which of the sources is associated with this. So either D o T or New York Times and Ocean gate.com. All right.
Anthony: All right, I’m ready.
Fred: warm and whoever gets the most correct answers. Anthony, you please tally up the correct answers. We’ll get a used hat. That I’m wearing right now. It says the Berkshires, which is a very nice hat. Okay, so here’s the first one. The industry hasn’t innovated or grown because there were too many regulations.
Innovative designs often require a multi-year approval process, which gets in the way of rapid innovation. So Ocean Gate or D o t, ocean
Michael: Gate. Yeah. That’s the submersible. Yep.
Fred: Yeah. All right. So here’s, so you both win on that one.
Michael: Cause Nitso, Nitso would not be whining about regulations. Right? So
Anthony: here’s Auto Industries would, I knew that one just cause I sent it around to the two of you yesterday.
Fred: So here’s another one. It must modernize or eliminate. Outdated regulations that unnecessarily impede the development of the technology or do not address critical safety needs.
Michael: I’m guessing nitza there with the modernization stuff,
Fred: right? Yes. Nitza. I’m making it too obvious. Yes, that is NHTSA.
Anthony: We paid attention to this show.
All right. If you’re playing at home, just pause. After each question he asks, sit down with your family and say, Hey, how did our lives become this? It’s cause little Billy didn’t do his homework. We could be at Disney World now instead. We’re sitting around. Oh, sorry.
Fred: Go on. Alright, so here’s one. This technology applies the latest advances in material science and technology to meet its challenges.
Anthony: Airbag manufacturers.
Fred: That’s Ocean Gate. That’s Ocean Gate, right? But the right approach to achieving safety improvements begins with a focus on removing unnecessary barriers rather than regulations.
Anthony: Oh I’m gonna say Ocean Gate as
Michael: well. I’m gonna say mi on that one. The removing barriers thing just sounds like a haunting nightmare from my past
Fred: split decision.
That wasn’t it, sir. Yes. All right. So let’s see. Oh, the adopted framework promotes the benefits of safe deployment while managing risk and provides clarity to the public regarding distinctions between various stages of testing and full development. It’s
Anthony: about automated vehicles. Autonomy.
Michael: I’ve gotta do NHTSA there
Yeah I’m making this too easy. I thought it was gonna be more difficult. Wow. We get
Michael: no credit.
Fred: Yeah. So anyway, Mr. Lockridge, who was the chief engineer at Ocean Gate, reported learning that the viewpoint, the view port that lets passengers see outside the craft is only certified to work in depths of 1300 meters, far less than would be necessary for trips to the Titanic.
Which is nearly 4,000 meters below the ocean surface. That’s not a question, that’s just an aside. All right. So here’s one. Last one. Reliance on self-certification approach instead of type approval more appropriately balances and promotes safety and innovation.
Anthony: Nitza. I wanna say that’s both of them.
Fred: Yeah. Here. So here’s the it is nsa, but here’s the quote from Ocean Gate. Because this Titan Craft was so innovative, it could take years to get it certified by the usual assessment agencies. Bringing an outside entity up to speed of every innovation before it is put into real world testing is anathema to rapid innovation.
So I hope I’ve made my point. There’s a lot of parallels between the disaster that’s taking place in the North Atlantic. And the guidance being provided by NHTSA for people who are developing self-driving vehicles, including the level three that we were just discussing.
Anthony: Final score, Michael plus 17.
Anthony plus two because he doesn’t want the hat. Hey Michael, congratulations. You’re the winner. Thank you.
Fred: Look forward. I’m wearing it right now, but I’ll show it to you after
Anthony: the show. It comes with that new Fred smell.
Michael: I also learned the difference between a submarine and a submersible. So a submarine is like a level one or two vehicle where the people in the submarine have control.
What they’re in is a submersible where they basically have one button, a video screen, and they’re being controlled from above. I’m, as I’m assuming so that
Fred: was, no, they’re not. They only have limited, limited engagement from above control. Yeah. So they can text back and forth from limited depths but not all the way down.
Anthony: Yeah. Oh horrible. Hopefully it resolves.
Fred: What a I’d be terrified being in a submarine under my heart goes out to these poor people.
Anthony: Speaking of being terrified, it’s time for the recall. Roundup strap
Fred: in time for the recall
VO: roundup. Some transition
Anthony: this week. We’re gonna start off with our favorite target friend of the show, Tesla’s semi.
Remember Tesla’s semi-truck back in 2017? Elon said, Hey, it’s gonna be ready, it’s gonna come out. And then it didn’t. And then the next year he said, Hey, it’s gonna be ready, it’s gonna come out. And then it didn’t. And then it, Hey, it’s gonna be ready, it’s gonna kick, and you know this story. And they produce 36 of these, as best we can tell, they can haul potato chips roughly 17 feet.
No, it’s that’s a little too harsh. But they’ve produced 36 of these, I think, as far as I can tell. Only Pepsi has bought them or been donated them. cause why would you pay for these things? I don’t know. And they’ve been recalled twice, all 37 vehicles. So the current one is the electronic parking brake valve module could malfunction and move into the park position when the parking brake is activated.
Wait, that sounds like a good thing. I don’t understand this one. What’s happening here? Even Michael doesn’t understand, he’s wait, and I sent this around.
Michael: Yeah. I don’t even know if that’s a there’s only, let’s see. Nope, I don’t know this one.
Anthony: This is a
Michael: voluntary reason. That doesn’t make sense that, that explanation.
Basically, there’s a non-compliance here, so when your door closes, it’s, that’s a separate one. Yeah. Okay. It’s gonna, It’s gonna tell you whether or not there is a door open. Right. Whether the door is fully latched or not. And in this case, if the door is open it’s not doing that. So it’s not compliant with F and dss.
Anthony: Okay. The Tesla semi, all Teslas remember are semi. Semi done. Semi, eh, come on. All right, moving on to Hyundai. The Hyundai, I had 2022 Hyundai Ionic five roughly, almost 40,000 of them. The problem is loss of motive power. Motive power. That’s an interesting one. Many consumers report a loud pop noise followed by a warning displayed in their dashboard, and immediately experience a loss of motive, power and bowel control.
That ranges from a reduction to a complete loss of motive power, and requires a quick trip to the laman. Anyone? I,
Fred: a loud pop followed by the engine stopping. I I don’t know what to say. Yeah. And
Anthony: these are EVs, the Ionics, right?
Michael: Yeah. And this is an investigation, this is looking into, so they’ve had.
They’ve had 30 consumer complaints on a, a relatively new vehicle. And this doesn’t look good at all. I mean, it’s a, you don’t often get a pop before a loss of motive power. That’s somewhat unique. Although it does sound similar to the, some of the Hyundai Kia engine problems which are unrelated completely because those weren’t Right.
Right. Yeah that’s a scary. I don’t understand. Really. They’ve had 30 complaints of stalling in these very, this 30,000, 40,000 almost population of vehicles. That’s pretty severe. And the fact that nits is having to open an investigation here versus Hyundai saying, yeah, we have a problem, let’s fi fix it.
It’s a little troubling, you I, especially since Hyundai and Kia have both recently been through the loss of motive, power and stalling that occurred in their bad ice engines, you’d think they learned their lesson here, but I would expect them to comply fairly soon. It’s just odd that nits had to even open in this investigation.
Fred: There’s not a lot of electronics that are designed to make popping noises, and usually the electronics that are designed to make popping noises are sitting on your counter in the kitchen making popcorn. This is just a ridiculous
Anthony: situation. Given t’s recent track record, this investigation should be over by 2031.
Ford is recalling a potential number of units affected almost 1,000,900 79,000, blah, blah, blah. This title I think is funny. It’s head restraint. Instructions missing. Ford is recalling certain 2018 to 2023 Expedition and Lincoln Navigators. Equipped with third row seating and 2019 to 2023 f super duty F 2 53, 54, 55 50, and 600 super cabs, and three passenger front bench seat.
Basically they’re missing part of a manual for how a head restraint works. Look as somebody who’s actually read their entire car manual from cover to cover. I don’t remember this part of the head restraint.
Michael: Yeah, I think they just, these are pretty basic instructions that just tell you how to adjust and remove the head restraint and the center seating position on these types of seats.
So it’s a relatively small recall in terms of, the potential threat. I, we know how many people actually read their owner’s manuals. It’s very low and, it’s, but it’s important that Ford gets this information out. To owners for a lot of reasons. One of them is they are reducing their liability and can point to this in case there’s a crash and someone alleges a, an issue in a center seat.
But, this is, we were just, I just brought this one up mainly just to point out that, not all recalls involve a massive safety failure or a massive, or a bunch of crashes or anything. This is basically a noncompliance with f and b S 2 0 2 that requires manufacturers to provide instructions on how to operate those darn head restraints in your vehicle.
Anthony: This is a the copier was out of paper problem. More or
Michael: less or, the fo the person creating the publications just happened to miss that one head restraint out of the, six other head restraints or more that are in these giant trucks. All
Anthony: right, moving on. Nissan, which looks like a Friday afternoon problem, 2022 Nissan Sentras.
It’s 230 vehicles that they estimate. All 230 of these vehicles have this problem affected. Vehicles may have a missing or improper seal in the driver’s side. Cal during heavy rain there, there’s prob possibility of water getting in there. So I’m giving the fact this is a small number of vehicles.
This is Friday afternoon. Let’s all leave the factory in Tennessee and go get a beer.
Michael: Yeah, I don’t know. I mean, they want it to be a small recall, but how often does, I mean, I’m not missing a cow in my vehicle and the my driver. Side floor gets wet frequently, particularly when it snows. And in other times, so maybe the solution here is not putting electrical components in areas where there’s bound to be water at some point.
And maybe this is a recall that should be much larger and may I just. I can’t get around the fact that they’re putting electronic components, unshielded, unprotected from the conditions. Right under the spot where your icy, snowy feet are going to go in the winter, right? Water
Fred: gets everywhere in cars.
There’s no way to keep it out of everything. This must just be for, again, really poor design, as Michael pointed out. But the electronics should be designed to be resistant to the kind of water that you’re going to find because it does get everywhere. There’s no way to keep things hermetically sealed in a car over its lifetime.
Seals wear out. Parts warp. Enclosures warp. This is again, inexcusable.
Anthony: I agree. Know what also is inexcusable, not going to auto safety.org. Clicking the donate button. Inexcusable. Come on. Don’t need much from you. Just a little bit. A little, just a little sugar, little taste. Come on people. We can do this.
I have a last recall, but Michael didn’t provide a link to it, so I’m just gonna read off what he wrote. B m w Sudden Acceleration. Bad machine interface when turning at slow speeds, the driver may reengage.
Michael: So this one’s kind of interesting. We, we, there are a lot of sudden acceleration complaints that come in to NHTSA and that we receive and, This one was I is, it’s interesting to see a recall on this issue because you rarely do, because most manufacturers point their finger back at the consumer and say, you hit the wrong pedal.
And that’s true a lot of the time. So sudden acceleration, some acceleration. Investigations are recalls and recalls are complicated by the fact that people do hit the wrong pedal. And they do claim after the fact that they didn’t quite fervently in many cases. But on the other hand, we have circumstances like Toyota, sudden acceleration and possibly Tesla.
There’s still kind of an open questions in our mind about what’s going on in the nits investigation there. Here BMWs come out and say, Hey, look. We screwed up. When you’re turning your wheel at slow speeds, you can nudge the cruise control back on and shoot off like a rocket. So this is kind of a human factors problem that they’ve discovered.
After these cars have gone the road and drivers have started running around in them that sometimes people are nudging their cruise control on and the vehicle’s accelerating. Quite rapidly. So that’s a problem. And it’s good. They’re fixing.
Anthony: That’s impressive because when I was also shopping for my a hundred thousand dollars bm w I noticed them being a little more humble than the Mercedes dealers.
There wasn’t any dirty cherubs with their face pressed up against the glass. Huh? I don’t know. No benets? Yeah. No, no beignets. It was it was a lot of schnitzel and insert name of other German food here. Sure.
Michael: If you want to if you really wanna make beignets, just go buy the Pillsbury flaky biscuits and cut ’em into little pieces and fry ’em in oil.
Shake ’em in powdered sugar. Boom. Just as good as the beignet. Half the work.
Anthony: Hey, and can I get that that flaky biscuit from my local Piggly Wiggly? Absolutely. This show not brought to you by Piggly Wiggly. But hey, if Piggly Wiggly is listening, we mention you way too much, Piggly Wiggly and Ferrari.
Two people who are not sponsoring two corporations. No other corporations are people not sponsoring us, but
Fred: should Benets from Piggly, excuse me, benets from Piggly Wiggly. Definitely a Southern aspect here.
Anthony: And Angioplasties brought to you from Mount Sinai. With that’s another episode of our show.
Thank you so much for listening. Listeners. Thank you even more for donating. So if you donate, I’m, you feel that little extra. Thank you. That’s for you. For everyone else who just listens, it’s, thank you. Yeah. Good data, boy. Yep.
Anthony: All right. We’ll be back next week as we start season two, cause you know I figured.
I don’t know what seasons are in podcasts. I don’t get that. But next, next week will be season two. This is the end of one full year of their auto bail law.
Fred: Thank you, listeners. Thanks everybody. It’s been a pleasure. Michael, you want the hat?