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Man Says Tesla Autopilot Saved His Life By Driving Him To the Hospital (cnbc.com) 153

An anonymous reader writes: Last month a man sent an email to Elon Musk explaining how his Tesla Model S with Autopilot activated may have saved a pedestrian's life. Now, it appears Autopilot may have saved the life of a Tesla Model X driver. CNBC reports: "A Missouri man says his Tesla helped saved his life by driving him to the hospital during a life-threatening emergency. Joshua Neally is a lawyer and Tesla owner from Springfield, Missouri, who often uses the semi-autonomous driving system called Autopilot on his Tesla Model X. The system has come under fire after it was involved in a fatal Florida crash in May, but Neally told online magazine Slate that Autopilot drove him 20 miles down a freeway to a hospital, while Neally suffered a potentially fatal blood vessel blockage in his lung, known as a pulmonary embolism. The hospital was right off the freeway exit, and Neally was able to steer the car the last few meters and check himself into the emergency room, the report said."
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Man Says Tesla Autopilot Saved His Life By Driving Him To the Hospital

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  • by alvinrod ( 889928 ) on Friday August 05, 2016 @06:54PM (#52653665)
    Not to diminish the usefulness of the feature, but wouldn't it have made more sense to call an ambulance? The auto-pilate might be able to get you there, but if you need immediate treatment, the Tesla can't do much for you.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 05, 2016 @07:01PM (#52653699)

      Odd, I would expect the auto-Pilate function to crucify me, not to save me.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 05, 2016 @07:54PM (#52653849)

      Not to diminish the usefulness of the feature, but wouldn't it have made more sense to call an ambulance?

      Yes, and no. Pulmonary embolism (PE) survivor here. I had mine for over a week before my employer finally told me they would not give me any more hours until I went to the hospital. Yes because there is plenty of time to get an ambulance, and for the same reason, no. But arriving in an ambulance will get you looked at sooner when you get there. I walked to the hospital though (very slowly). Twice. The first time I left after waiting 90 minutes in the emergency room without seeing a single medical professional, just a few cleaners (this was mid-afternoon). I went back the next day and when someone finally saw me, they put me in intensive care immediately, do not pass go. By that point I was bringing up not insignificant amounts of blood.

      I have been through a lot of physical pain in my life, but there is no pain like PE pain. Can't sleep, or even lie down for a week pain. It was intense.

      Interestingly, in the process, being unable to yawn during that week because it was too painful, I now have a theory that yawning has some respiratory function. Once I could yawn again I really appreciated it, and could feel its effect.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by ilctoh ( 620875 )

        Not to diminish the usefulness of the feature, but wouldn't it have made more sense to call an ambulance?

        Yes, and no.

        Actually, just yes. Speaking as a paramedic, a PE (or really anything which causes difficulty breathing lasting longer than a few seconds) is a completely legitimate reason to ask for an ambulance. That clot could move at any time, making it impossible to breath. And especially in the case described in this story, where the patient was suffering enough that he couldn't maintain full control of a vehicle without assistance - choosing to drive yourself is just silly. Just go ahead and give us a call, we d

    • by gweilo8888 ( 921799 ) on Friday August 05, 2016 @08:22PM (#52653923)
      This. Instead of hyping Tesla, this idiot should have called for an ambulance. What happens if he passes out on the way to the hospital, and then his "autopilot" decides it can't quite tell what it's doing and reverts control the unconscious driver? An accident, that's what.

      Tesla owners really are a special kind of stupid to rely on autopilot like they do.
      • by Mashiki ( 184564 )

        He's lucky the hospital just didn't tell him to call for an ambulance while they were on the steps. That happens quite a bit here in Canada.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      You must not be from the US. In America ambulances cost a small fortune.

      • Well that's fucking ridiculous. No wonder your country is so fucked up when needing a simple public service like getting to the hospital and receiving medical care during the journey actually costs you cash. Just pay for the things out of general taxation - you'll be better off in the long run.

        • No go, the average american would go nuts thinking about how someone might use the amulance while they've themselves were responsible.

          American cannot stand that someone gets something for "free", they are all individuals living in a bubble disconnected from the rest of society. It's one against them all.

          • There's a difference between "free" and "not overpriced", though. The former just makes it saner to make it some kind of public arrangement.
        • Well that's fucking ridiculous. No wonder your country is so fucked up when needing a simple public service like getting to the hospital and receiving medical care during the journey actually costs you cash. Just pay for the things out of general taxation - you'll be better off in the long run.

          I'm curious how other countries with free ambulances deal with people taking the ambulance to the doctor for non-emergencies. Here in the USA, many people who don't have to pay (medicaid/medicare) already abuse the ambulance system as a "free" taxi. While in college, it was common for people to go to the nurse for bandaids and/or a tylenol, again, because it was "free". That "free" tylenol likely cost more in labor costs than an entire bottle would at the store.

    • I doubt the car "knew" that he was having a medical emergency. He probably just told it to exit at the hospital exit. For it to call an ambulance, he would have had to tell it to do so.

    • by Sycraft-fu ( 314770 ) on Saturday August 06, 2016 @04:07AM (#52654873)

      Unless the ambulance takes a really long time to get to your house (and in most cities they are distributed around town, usually in fire stations, they don't come from the hospital) you get treatment faster. Why? Because they can treat you. Ambulances are little mobile treatment rooms. They have an EMT and Paramedic who have a not insignificant amount of training, a radio back to doctors, and a ton of equipment. No, they are not as well equipped as a hospital, but they have a lot of shit, including most of what you'd want to keep someone stable until they reach the hospital. Also they can usually get there faster than you can since they have the whole lights n' sirens thing. That isn't magic, but it helps them move through traffic a lot faster than normal.

      Let's say you live 30 minutes away from the hospital, presuming normal traffic. If you leave your house right away, and everything goes well (like you don't pass out) then you get there in 30 minutes and presuming they properly triage you you get full care then. However if you call an ambulance you may have to wait, but let's say one is at a fire station only 15 minutes away, particularly since they can move faster. So in that case you get treatment starting in 15 minutes, not full care, but people there to help, and you get full care in 40, because they get to the hospital in 25 minutes rather than 30.

      It will vary based on where you live, of course, but it is information you can find out if you are interested. Usually, you'll be getting care a lot faster with an ambulance and it won't take that much longer to get to the hospital.

      Also it can help with making sure you get care right away if you need it. The Paramedic will be doing triage on you, seeing how bad you are. If you are in a bad way and need immediate care, they will let the hospital know and they'll be ready. You'll be admitted straight away and seen to. However if you walk in, that sometimes doesn't happen. Hospitals assume, usually correctly, that if you are well enough to be able to get yourself to them, walk in and sit down, you are well enough to wait until there is time. Now hopefully they'll notice if you are in need of immediate care, but maybe not.

      Come in on an ambulance though, and it is probably taken care of. If you are not seriously injured, no problem, you'll come in and wait if necessary, just as if you walked in. If you are in need of immediate care though, they'll make sure to have it ready if they can.

    • Depending on where he is.. and the distance to the hospital.. waiting for an ambulance may be the difference of life and death.. remember, they have to GET you.. load and assess you, and then transport you. Vs.. if you have a vehicle that is quasi-automatic... you can cut at least half of that by heading to the hospital yourself.

      I find it amusing that everyone wants to burn Tesla for theoretical problems.. (the hack as an example) but the reality is, NO system is perfect.. and so long as improvements are b

    • by Xicor ( 2738029 )

      would have taken more than twice as long AND would have cost him another $100k

    • By the time an ambulance would have found him, driving 10 mph like they seem to, and taken him there ... I injured myself once in a rural setting. Drove myself to the ER because it would have taken hours for them to have found me, knowing the inability of most people ten years ago to route to an address.
  • call an ambulance (Score:5, Insightful)

    by YesIAmAScript ( 886271 ) on Friday August 05, 2016 @06:55PM (#52653669)

    Don't risk wrecking or running over people on your way to the hospital. Call an ambulance. Even if it is expensive, if you can afford a $100K car you can afford to call an ambulance.

    • by sconeu ( 64226 )

      TFA isn't clear, but maybe he was already on the freeway when it happened?

      In that case, I'd probably have it drive me. If I was at home, I'd 911.

      • by alcmena ( 312085 ) on Friday August 05, 2016 @07:14PM (#52653737)
        Other articles were more clear. He was on the freeway, and he was worried, probably correctly, that he could drive there faster from where he was than an ambulance could arrive.
        • And if his condition worsened while driving there causing an accident injuring others? There's a reason why you call an ambulance and you do it for reasons in addition to yourself.

          • And if his condition worsened while driving there causing an accident injuring others? There's a reason why you call an ambulance and you do it for reasons in addition to yourself.

            He was presented with a risk reward trade-off and made the right call.

            • Re: (Score:2, Troll)

              by Sowelu ( 713889 )

              Pedantic: No, he was presented with a risk-reward trade off and he made a successful call. We don't know enough to properly judge if it was a correct call, it just worked in this instance.

              Still. Let's say you're playing Blackjack and you're dealt a 19, while the dealer has an 8 showing. If you double down and wind up with 21, and the dealer ends up at 20, you may have made a winning decision--but that doesn't mean it was a smart decision, just lucky.

              Not that someone suffering a pulmonary embolism is in a

          • by alcmena ( 312085 ) on Friday August 05, 2016 @07:47PM (#52653833)
            I happen to own a Model S, so have more experience with Autopilot than most. As someone who has never used it, I understand and appreciate your concern. As someone who had experienced Autopilot over a length of time, your worries are overblown and the bigger concern would be if he passed out before the final stretch. That concern isn't because he would have hurt someone else. It's because without him being aware, he wouldn't have made it the final stretch.
        • No, probably not correctly.

        • As someone treats these for a living, this is unequivocally a bad idea even if we assume autopilot is perfect. There was a real risk of him dying behind the wheel. loosing consciousness. In pain like that you think he has judgment to safely no when to override the autopilot?
          To the posters who mention he shouldn't pull over and talk on the phone. In the slate article he admits to texting and using his phone normally for auto pilot. He did call he wife so at least she would have known what happened.

          Pe

    • by Trogre ( 513942 )

      Wait, expensive? You've already paid for it through taxes. Why would any ambulance service charge you twice?

      • by mspohr ( 589790 )

        Most ambulance services charge big bucks for transport. It's a big moneymaker for towns.
        Yes, your taxes pay for them but if you use them, you get to pay again.

      • by geoskd ( 321194 )

        Wait, expensive? You've already paid for it through taxes. Why would any ambulance service charge you twice?

        Thats not how it works...

        The ambulance company, like the hospital, expects to get paid, and will send your bill to a collections agency if you don't pay it. Like a hospital, they are not allowed to refuse treatment, and it is pretty bad karma to look for cash up front from someone in need of an ambulance ride. You might think that the ambulance service is paid for by taxes, but most of them are either private, or volunteer companies.

        You might not have noticed the cost before, because it is typically include

        • it is pretty bad karma to look for cash up front from someone in need of an ambulance ride

          I'm sure that's what's keeping them from adopting that practice...

        • by Trogre ( 513942 )

          Ambulance... company?
          Hospital... bill?

          Good Lord, man, what has happened to your country?

      • Re:call an ambulance (Score:5, Interesting)

        by gweilo8888 ( 921799 ) on Friday August 05, 2016 @08:34PM (#52653949)
        This is the USA. We're the ultimate example of why privatization is a bad thing. Want ambulance service? Oh, no, you're taxes don't cover that. Pay up. House on fire? No, your taxes don't cover that either -- pay $900/year for the privilege of maybe having some of your stuff saved if it goes up in flames. Instead of the lowest possible cost spread across an entire nation, it's essentially legalized extortion and most people just try and do without.

        Oh, and that $900 figure? That's not made up. It's approximately what I'd be charged per year for fire service in my old house in a relatively less affluent neighborhood in a non-rural area of a reasonably large city. It's approximately 0.6% of the entire value of my house, every year. When I first moved here, I got a delightful letter from the local fire department -- which is why I call this extortion -- advising me that if I have a fire without paying up ahead of time, they'll either refuse to do anything except what's necessary to stop my house damaging a neighbor's house who paid up ahead of time, or they'll sit and watch my place burn until I agree to pay into the tens of thousands of dollars -- even if they don't manage to save a single thing.

        Nice, eh?
        • $900 is very high. Do they enjoy a government monopoly? Private fire is supposed to allow pricing pressure. Are there very few people in your town?

          • $900 is very high. Do they enjoy a government monopoly? Private fire is supposed to allow pricing pressure. Are there very few people in your town?

            When the barrier of entry to a market is very high because of the need for large up-front investments (like buying a fire engine and a ladder engine) or because there is long regulatory hurdles (like getting permits to dig in order to lay cable) you don't need a Government enforced monopoly, you enjoy what economists call a "Natural Monopoly"

        • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

          This is the USA. We're the ultimate example of why privatization is a bad thing. Want ambulance service? Oh, no, you're taxes don't cover that. Pay up. House on fire? No, your taxes don't cover that either -- pay $900/year for the privilege of maybe having some of your stuff saved if it goes up in flames. Instead of the lowest possible cost spread across an entire nation, it's essentially legalized extortion and most people just try and do without.

          As opposed to real live legalized extortion where if you don't pay they steal your property and/or throw you in jail?

          Oh, wait, I think I see the difference, with legalized extortion you get to directly benefit from the stolen labor of others while the 'essentially legalized' version you must pay for what you use.

        • For those here who missed the news a few years ago, here's how things work in some parts of the US:

          http://www.nbcnews.com/id/39516346/ns/us_news-life/t/no-pay-no-spray-firefighters-let-home-burn [nbcnews.com]
          http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2011/12/07/9272989-firefighters-let-home-burn-over-75-fee-again [nbcnews.com]

          Hard to believe, I know.
          • Hard to believe, I know.

            Why is this so hard to believe?? Firefighters have no duty to risk their lives for people who don't pay them to. -- it's a local service paid for by local money.

            What people may be even more surprised by is that police have no duty to protect them either, as has been repeatedly upheld in rulings like this [wikipedia.org] and this [wikipedia.org].

            Basically, no matter how negligent the cops may be in not responding or not helping people (even with supposedly legally binding and enforceable documents like restraining orders) or not gener

            • by Swave An deBwoner ( 907414 ) on Saturday August 06, 2016 @12:26AM (#52654525)
              You may have missed the point.

              This is not about expectations of firefighters working for free, nor about cops.

              In most civilized locales, firefighters (and cops) are paid through public funds obtained via taxes.

              In rural Tennessee, it appears that the fire department is paid via individual homeowner "subscriptions", literally. If you don't subscribe then they will let your home and your pets (maybe your kids too, I don't know) burn. In fact it's not the firefighters who decided that, it was the pea-brained politicians and --, probably by the power of suggestion -- their constituents, who decided that. "No more taxes", yeah!
              • God bless you, America. God bless you.
              • I think you missed the salient points in the article.

                These are city fire fighters. Paid for by city taxes. The county does not maintain a fire department. So the city provides fire services to county residents for a fee. The home in question was located in the county, outside the city limits.

                The city has no power or authority to levy taxes on county residents. The county could do this, but elected not to.

                The alternative here is not for the city firefighters to put out fires in the county without being

                • The city has no power or authority to levy taxes on county residents. The county could do this, but elected not to.

                  and I wrote:

                  In rural Tennessee ... it was the pea-brained politicians and -- probably by the power of suggestion -- their constituents, who decided that. "No more taxes", yeah!

                  So I think we agree that rural Tennessee's moronic politicians and their brainwashed constituents have elected not to provide for a fire department. Because, taxes.

        • Medical care in the US yes, that is private. So you pay for ambulances. Fire, no that varies by region. There is no federal firefighting setup, for a lot of reasons. So it is a state and local thing. Generally, firefighters are paid for by county or city taxes. In the vast majority of places, this is the case. If you are actually in the city limits, it is essentially always the case.

          The issue is unincorporated areas. They don't have city government services because, well, they aren't incorporated in a city.

          • It is actually better if it is directly billed, because then people have an understanding of what their services cost. When it all comes out of your check in a lump sum, or all gets rolled into your mortgage payment, it is hard to understand when things have gone sideways. You have to pay either way.

            We would probably have a lot less waste in government if every item were billed separately.

            My city services are billed en mas, but they are broken out by line items. So I get to say things like "holy crap, why

        • When I first moved here, I got a delightful letter from the local fire department -- which is why I call this extortion -- advising me that if I have a fire without paying up ahead of time, they'll either refuse to do anything except what's necessary to stop my house damaging a neighbor's house who paid up ahead of time, or they'll sit and watch my place burn until I agree to pay into the tens of thousands of dollars -- even if they don't manage to save a single thing.

          This seems like something I'd have looked into before I moved in...

        • by ilctoh ( 620875 )
          In the USA, at least, tax-payer funded municipal services cover the overwhelming majority of the country, for both fire and ambulance service. However, most tax-payer funded ambulance services will still bill people for individual ambulance calls, even though they are tax payer funded. The reason is at least partly because the tax income simply does not cover the cost of running these services. As a paramedic, I can tell you that on any one call, we may go through a few hundred dollars of disposable equip
    • "afford to call an ambulance"? Wtf is that a thing in America? Do you actually have to be able to afford life saving emergency services?

      Wtf is wrong with your country!

      • Ditto. Flabbergasted that America draws the line between low tax and protecting citizens underneath staying alive, when most (all?) developed nations do.

        MODERN CIVILISATION ESSENTIALS???

        • 1. Universal safety (armed forces)
        • 2. Universal justice (non-corrupt (fair) police / legal system)
        • 3. Universal education
        • 4. Universal healthcare (if you're sick we fix you if we can)
        • 5. Universal safety net (basic social security if your circumstances mean otherwise you would starve / die of cold etc)
  • In the vast majority of cases an ambulance is faster (and safer) getting to you than you are getting to the hospital and they can give you some treatment on the spot.
    • by guruevi ( 827432 )

      Faster? No way an ambulance is faster. They have to get to you which in a city can take up to an hour, more in the country, do a preliminary check, then bring you to the hospital where they do a preliminary check again. You're losing at least 15-30m waiting for an ambulance and their triage, that is significant for any kind of life threatening issue (heart attack, pulmonary embolism, stroke,...). Plus those vehicles although priority don't actually drive all that fast. If you have an automated car or better

      • by Anonymous Coward

        The English NHS aims for an ambulance response time in urban areas of 9 minutes. You're telling me that in the land of the free market, the invisible hand can't ensure that an ambulance gets to a seriously ill person in less than an hour? What's the point of having an ambulance service at all if that's the case when taxi firms could get you to hospital faster?

        • "The English NHS aims for an ambulance response time in urban areas of 9 minutes. "

          If the ambulances will go out (See the SECAMB scandal)

          I had a suspected DVT (precursor to pulmenory embolism) and the local ambulance service told me to make my own way to hospital. When I arrived the necessary blood tests were triaged at high priority, past a queue of 40 other people and I was berated for walking in instead of... calling an ambulance.

          Yes, SECAMB.

    • In the vast majority of cases an ambulance is faster (and safer) getting to you than you are getting to the hospital and they can give you some treatment on the spot.

      Source? A brief google search indicates that ambulance response times vary widely from place to place based on a variety of factors. I didn't find any recent sources specific to Springfield, MO. Twenty miles on a freeway is typically less than 20 minutes barring traffic. Do Springfield's ambulances typically respond faster than that? Was traffic a factor? How much would traffic impact the ambulance? How fast does the autopilot feature drive?

      • The fact of the matter is most people don't have the capacity to do a proper risk reward analysis when something happens. They panic, and do whatever stupid thing seems most likely to save them -- even if that makes no sense

    • by Memnos ( 937795 )
      Yet, that's not always true. My admittedly anecdotal evidence -- me not being dead now.
    • In the vast majority of cases an ambulance is faster

      [citation needed]

      (and safer)

      That's probably true.

      getting to you than you are getting to the hospital

      [citation needed]

      and they can give you some treatment on the spot.

      If they're actually faster. And plenty of people die in ambulances. I'd rather be in the hospital if I need to be resuscitated.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Man puts other drivers at risk by keeping driving after being severely impaired with the help of a half-baked autonomous driving system.

  • "A Missouri man says his Tesla helped saved his life by driving him to the hospital during a life-threatening emergency. Joshua Neally is a lawyer"

    I don't see how this is a positive thing for society?

    • by Anonymous Coward

      It was on the fourth birthday of his daughter. That's not a day to die, not even for a lawyer.

      • by dwye ( 1127395 )

        It was on the fourth birthday of his daughter. That's not a day to die, not even for a lawyer.

        Well, not for the lawyer's daughter, certainly.

        And I, for one, do not want a car making this sort of moral or ethical judgement, even if the car was driven by a Mexican drug lord. Robot Overlords be damned.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    How often are we going to have these Elon Musk pandering articles. Tesla is the opposite of Apple around here. They can do no wrong.

    It's as if 90% of the slashdot regulars have a hard on for Musk's hard on.

    • by Sowelu ( 713889 )

      Autopilot is a very disruptive technology that it's worth keeping an eye on, same as drones (which I guess are technically the same thing?). Slashdot ran stories about autopilot-related crashes, too.

  • We'll probably see these stories highlighted non-stop until some sort of legal decision is made on the liability of the actions genuinely autonomous vehicles. Google, Tesla, and everyone else working on the tech will need constant need investor support and public reaction to happy stories otherwise they'll have to face the real question of liability.

    The problem at hand: It doesn't matter how many people a car's autonomous driving doesn't kill, what matters is the number of people it fails to save. The same rule applies to humans: People cannot defend negligent or murderous actions by a listing of all the people that they didn't kill. What matters is harm committed, not harm evaded.

    Moreover, can any company survive the of full liability of the loss of more than a few lives? Over 30,000 people per year are killed on American roads. Even if autonomous vehicles reduced that to 10,000 people per year (a 66% reduction!), their manufacturers/programmers would still be responsible for the death of 10,000 people! What industry could survive that liability? That many civil law suits?
    • I know it sounds harsh, but 30k automobile-related deaths per year is already statistical noise. It's not even 100 people per day. That's less than two in each state per day.

      To put that in perspective: almost twice as many people die per year falling off things.

    • The problem at hand: It doesn't matter how many people a car's autonomous driving doesn't kill, what matters is the number of people it fails to save. The same rule applies to humans: People cannot defend negligent or murderous actions by a listing of all the people that they didn't kill. What matters is harm committed, not harm evaded.

      Moreover, can any company survive the of full liability of the loss of more than a few lives? Over 30,000 people per year are killed on American roads. Even if autonomous vehicles reduced that to 10,000 people per year (a 66% reduction!), their manufacturers/programmers would still be responsible for the death of 10,000 people! What industry could survive that liability? That many civil law suits?

      What is really bugging people is the haphazard way in which Tesla is going about this.

      I have very little confidence that Tesla has any real idea how many lives their auto-pilot will cost or save, nor that they have even tried to seriously study the issue. By all appearances Tesla sees itself as being in a race to be the first one with a self-driving car and they're been happy to ship the first version that seems reasonably safe.

      As for these "happy" stories the first one actually had nothing to do with the s

  • by mentil ( 1748130 ) on Friday August 05, 2016 @07:20PM (#52653753)

    Tesla's 'Autopilot' feature takes another person to the hospital. When will the carnage end?!

  • Squad cars should have a way to enable a "Follow Me" feature so that an Auto-Drive car can be escorted to the correct location (and the needed persons could be at the CURB).

    • Squad cars should have a way to enable a "Follow Me" feature so that an Auto-Drive car can be escorted to the correct location (and the needed persons could be at the CURB).

      How about this for an upgrade:

      When a user of autodrive asks it to "take me to an emergency room" the system does this:
      - Locates the nearest accessible emergency room.
      - Starts going there.
      - Starts flashing the lights in an appropriate pattern.
      - Phones ahead to tell the emergency room personnel and/or 911 di

  • by Applehu Akbar ( 2968043 ) on Friday August 05, 2016 @07:46PM (#52653827)

    This feat was impressive, but it will do no good unless Autopilot takes the driver to a hospital that takes his insurance plan.

    • by sims 2 ( 994794 )

      Hm? last I checked a hospital in the united states can not deny anyone for emergency care.

      • A hospital that falls under EMTALA [cms.gov] cannot refuse care because of lack of payment or insurance (which covers nearly ALL hospitals with scant few exceptions). I've looked up the pre-hospital ALS protocols and drug list for paramedics in Springfield, and there aren't any treatment they are authorized to perform or drugs they can give (no Heparin on board their ambulances) for pulmonary embolism. They would be able to provide life support services were he to have experienced cardiac/respiratory arrest secondary
        • He should have pulled onto the side of the road with his hazards on and waited for paramedics. He risked dying at the wheel with no help available for what would have been very manageable emergencies for first responders.

          Don't expect someone with a life-threatening medical emergency in progress to think clearly.

      • Hm? last I checked a hospital in the united states can not deny anyone for emergency care.

        They are required to treat you in the ER, but if you pick a hospital that doesn't take your insurance, you will be billed at the chargemaster rate and spend spend the rest of your life paying it off.

        • by eWarz ( 610883 )
          a) does it matter when your life is in danger?
          b) You really have no idea what you are talking about. First, for plans that have an out of network option, they almost always have a Maximum Out of Pocket that you will pay (yes, for out of network, look at your insurance plan). Some states even have laws that a patient that is out of network be treated as 'in network' for the purposes of an emergency. Even if they didn't have an out of network option or MOOP, you can either file chapter 7 or 13 bankruptcy
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 05, 2016 @09:36PM (#52654097)

    So he knew he was in need of urgent medical attention and he knew his driving was severly impaired, but instead of getting off the road and calling an ambulance, he continued to drive, relying on a system not at all designed for such circumstances?

    I have some sympathy for people who assume Auto Pilot will not have glaring blind spots due to trivial engineering shortcomings, but anyone who thinks it means you can drive while unconscious/dead is not fit to be on the road. Thank goodness he did not cause an accident on this busy freeway resulting in the injury/death of dozens of people.

    This is the archetypal selfish cunt, who may have made a lucky call on this occasion, but certianly did not make the right one.

    • This is the archetypal selfish cunt, who may have made a lucky call on this occasion, but certianly did not make the right one.

      So what exactly is the motivation not to be selfish here? If you think you're going to die if your autopilot doesn't get you to the hospital, then why would you give a shit about anyone else? You'll be dead. This is why we need a functioning health care system, and also (but separately) why we need functioning self-driving cars. If I thought I could get myself to the hospital, that's what I would do with or without self-driving cars, because I can't afford to take an ambulance there. The debt would ruin me.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    But "everyone knows" you're not supposed to do this, right? Tesla tells you not to do this; you agree not to do this. If the article had been "man dies by using autopilot instead of calling ambulance" that's what a lot of people would be saying, right?

    I'm not saying that the feature should be disabled or making any claim as to whether or not it's a net benefit. But if you're going to take credit for these situations where the autopilot worked when the driver was clearly not in any condition to drive, then y

  • This is one of the main reasons I think self driving cars can only lead to the fall of humanity. I mean, he didn't call an ambulance because he knew damn well that when they found out he was a lawyer they would have taken the long way to the hospital and possibly stopped for a long lunch as well. Self driving cars have to be programmed to do this as well, otherwise before we know it we will be neck deep in lawyers and phone sanitizers.

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