A 66-year-old woman, and a 67-year-old man—both from Lompoc, California—died at the scene and the case is under investigation.
An elderly couple died at the scene when their Tesla car crashed into a semi-truck just off Interstate 75, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.
WTSP reports that the incident took place just before 2 p.m. on Wednesday in the parking lot of the Paynes Prairie rest area. The victims include a 66-year-old woman, and a passenger, a 67-year-old man from Lompoc, California. The driver of the semi-truck is a 58-year-old man from Ruskin, Florida who had parked the vehicle in the southbound rest area parking lot.
This is the 37th Tesla crash to be probed by the NHTSA. Couple from California were killed when their Tesla drove into the back of a Walmart truck that was parked in a Florida parking lot. The impact was so severe, the car’s roof was sheared off. pic.twitter.com/FXo3NoJEXg— Mike Sington (@MikeSington) July 9, 2022
Investigators are trying to determine how the vehicle got into the lot and crashed into the parked vehicle. "For unknown reasons, the Tesla traveled into a parking lot towards a tractor-trailer. The Tesla struck the rear of the tractor-trailer, where it came to a final rest," the FHP told CBS4 News in a statement. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is looking into the case to see if Tesla was operating on one of the partially automated driving systems. CBS News reports that the NHTSA has launched three dozen special investigations of car crashes involving Tesla vehicles in which driver assistance systems were thought to have been in use. From July 2021 to May 15, 2022, 273 of the 367 crashes involving driver-assist systems involve Tesla cars, according to an NHTSA report.
Mary Lou Seelandt and her husband, Karl Seelandt have been identified as the victims of the crash.
It is not yet clear if the car's driver-assistance Autopilot feature was operating at the time of the crash, which killed Mary Lou Seelandt, 66, and her husband, Karl Seelandt, 67, of Lompoc, California. https://t.co/T21bxkjAgm— CBS News (@CBSNews) July 14, 2022
Previously, a speeding Tesla crashed into a home and killed a Florida grandmother and her daughter's dog. Donna Rein, 69, and her daughter's Yorkshire terrier were killed when the out-of-control vehicle slammed into her house in Palm Harbor. FOX 13 reports that one of the passengers a 43-year-old man from Odessa died. The car was not on auto-pilot at the time of the incident. Amber Mooney, one of Donna’s daughters said, "She’s the most incredible person I’ve ever met, that anybody has ever met, she would open arms welcome anybody as her own, all of our friends, everybody that we know thinks of her as their second mom." She also helped take care of her granddaughters who have special needs. "She retired from her job to help me raise my kids, I have two special needs daughters, and she was my rock," Jones told the outlet, pointing out that the crash left her and her girls without a home. "She helped me, she went with me to take them to school, to therapies every day, and she took care of my little Riley."
Fla. Grandma Killed After Speeding Tesla Runs Through Stop Sign, Crashes into Her Home: 'Everybody Loves Her'https://t.co/2inA19MuKP— Chris Harris (@chrisharrisment) September 7, 2021
Representational Cover Image Source: Jasmin Merdan