Tesla ‘just took off,’ driver of vehicle that crashed into Olathe business told police

·2 min read

The woman behind the wheel of a Tesla that drove through the wall of an Olathe business last week told police that the car was out of control.

Just before 4 p.m. on Tuesday, the car crashed through the wall of Aerial Infrastructure Services at 1150 West 151 Street and into an unoccupied training room. Capt. Mike Hall, a spokesman with the Olathe Fire Department, at the time said no one was injured.

At the scene, the Tesla’s driver told police that the car “just took off,” even though she was not on the accelerator, according to a crash report from the Olathe Police Department.

The woman told police that she and another woman in the car were talking as she pulled into a parking stall outside AIS when the car continued forward, hopped the curb and drove through the wall, according to the report.

She told police the vehicle is equipped with a self-driving feature, but that she wasn’t using it at the time.

Police also obtained surveillance video footage of the crash from Camp Bow Wow next door. The video shows the Tesla pull into the parking lot before slowly turning into a parking stall.

“The vehicle suddenly accelerated forward, hopped over the curb, and crashed into the building,” the report reads.

Surveillance footage from inside the training room at A.I.S. shows the car come through the exterior wall. Then its left front tire “quickly appears to stop and starts moving forward” before crashing into the interior wall as well, the report said.

“The wheels motion appeared to be what a tire would do if ABS (anti-lock brake system) was active,” the reporting officer wrote, also noting that the car’s brake lights were activated at the time.

The training room was empty of people at the time of the crash, but did contain furniture, computers and other electronic devices, police said. When the car struck the second wall, it damaged bathroom plumbing which caused water lines to break, spraying the training room with water.

The driver was not cited in the incident, Sgt. Joel Yeldell, a spokesman for the Olathe Police Department, told The Star on Wednesday.

Yeldell said the owner of the vehicle will contact the manufacturer for further investigation. He did not provide additional information on the crash, pending the release of an incident report.

When reached for comment Wednesday, a representative for Aerial Infrastructure Services said the company had nothing further to add.

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