A pair of Canadian Tesla owners accidentally got into the wrong cars before their apps allowed them to drive in similar vehicles, they said Tuesday.
Rajesh Randev, 51, used his app to get into his 2021 Tesla Model 3, or so he thought, around 2:30 p.m. on March 7 and went to pick up his two children from school, the consultant said. Vancouver Immigration.
Minutes into the trip, Randev was alarmed to see a crack in the windshield and discovered that his phone’s charging cable was missing.
«I called my wife, ‘What happened to the windshield?’ Randev said. «So it was, ‘Where did my cable go?’ »
Shortly after Randev left, 32-year-old Uber driver Mahmoud Esaeyh used his app to get into what he believed to be his white 2020 Tesla Model 3 and drove a block before realizing what had happened.
«It was the only white Tesla on the block, and the car opened up. But as I walked away, I noticed something was different about the car,» Esaeyh said. «There were things in it that weren’t mine. I have a crack in my windshield that wasn’t there.»
Esaeyh rushed back to the original parking spot and called the police, fearing he would be accused of stealing the Tesla.
«Maybe someone will call the police, ‘Hey, my car was stolen,’ and I’d be in big trouble,» he said.
«Or what if he took my car and committed a crime or stole something, that car would have all my information.»
Fortunately, Esaeyh saw medical records and a prescription with Randev’s cell phone number in the car, allowing them to connect.
But the contact was not instantaneous.
Randev ignored several phone calls from a name and number he didn’t recognize.
Then the bizarre experience became even more confusing when Randev received a text: «Do you drive a Tesla?»
«I thought maybe some customer saw me or maybe some old friend or whatever, maybe someone recognized me (walking by) and sent me a text?» Randev said.
Randev didn’t put it all together until the text explained: «I think (you’re) driving the wrong car.»
Randev said he stopped in an alley, saw that the tires were not off his car, and realized that he had confused his own white Model 3 with the white Model 3 owned by the man in the other lane.
“I was totally surprised,” Randev said. “I mean, how was this possible? How was I able to access and drive?”
Randev collected his children and returned to the no-crime scene, where all parties shared laughter and some concerns.
«They (the children) would laugh together. I mean, my children are young, so they love computers and things like that and they would laugh,» Randev said.
«But then, on the other hand, they were also a bit scared, you know, how was this possible?»
As an Uber driver, Esaeyh said his car means everything to him.
«It’s my only income,» he said. «This is how I make money and pay my rent.»
Both men said they appreciated how the other handled the situation. Although both said they called Vancouver police, no formal report was filed.
«In this case, no crime occurred, it was simply a mistake,» a Vancouver police spokesman said.
The Vancouver mess marks the latest oddity involving the high-end car line which includes elements of driverless technology.
- A Tesla driver was killed and a passenger critically injured on February 18 when the car crashed into a parked fire truck on a Northern California freeway to protect a crew cleaning up another crash, authorities said. was
- It is immediately clear whether the driver may have been intoxicated or whether the Tesla Model S was operating with automation or driver assistance functions.
- Limousine driver Kevin George Aziz Riad was driving his Tesla Model S on autopilot in California in late 2019 when he ran a red light and crashed into a Honda Civic, killing Gilberto López and María Guadalupe Nieves-López, authorities said. . The driver has been charged with two counts of grossly negligent vehicular manslaughter and is pending trial in Compton.
- Regulators revealed this month that they have opened an investigation into Tesla’s Model Y SUV after receiving complaints that the steering wheels can come off while driving.
A representative with Tesla’s Investor Relations department could not immediately be reached for comment on Tuesday.
Randev said that he has been trying to contact Tesla since the incident. And other than an email from a local Tesla dealer requesting his phone number, he hasn’t heard back, he said.
frank polly and Andres Blankstein contributed.