First Real-World Tesla Cybertruck Crash Raises Safety Questions

The truck was hit by a Toyota Corolla that crossed the center line.

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Photos of the truck at the scene show deployed airbags, but not the parts of the truck directly involved in the collision. Image via Reddit.

A Dec. 28 collision involving a Tesla Cybertruck and a Toyota Corolla on California's Skyline Boulevard sparked interest and concern regarding the safety and construction of Tesla's innovative Cybertruck.

The crash occurred in wet and cloudy conditions. According to the California Highway Patrol's report, the Corolla, traveling south on SR-35, turned right off the road for an unknown reason, hit an embankment, veered back onto the road and collided with the northbound Cybertruck. The collision resulted in minor injuries to the Cybertruck's driver, who shares a name with a Tesla engineer, and declined medical transport. The Cybertruck was registered with Texas plates to a Palo Alto, CA, address, hinting but not confirming it might be a company vehicle. The crash did not appear to involve autonomous driving mode, and the investigation is ongoing.

Photos of the incident, shared on Reddit, showed the Cybertruck with deployed airbags. The Toyota sustained significant front-end damage, particularly on the driver's side. The damage to the Cybertruck is not entirely visible in the photographs, leaving some questions about the extent and the effectiveness of the truck's unique construction in such collisions.

Tesla's Cybertruck, known for its large cast sections and stainless steel body panels, has been a subject of speculation regarding its crash safety. While designed to meet safety regulations, the real-world crash brings up new questions about how its hard stainless steel panels and chassis castings behave in collisions.

The latest Tesla over-the-air update, which includes an automatic 911 notification feature in the event of airbag deployment, might have played a role in the swift response to the accident.

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