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The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has opened an investigation into a fatal accident involving a Tesla Motors Inc. sedan when the electric-auto maker’s Autopilot software was engaged.

The incident, which occurred on May 7 in Williston, Florida, was reported to NHTSA by Tesla. Shares in the automaker fell 2.7 percent to $206.50 at 4:50 p.m. New York time after closing regular trading up 1 percent at $212.28.

Tesla has always prided itself on its safety record. In August 2013, the Model S sedan was awarded a 5-star safety rating by NHTSA. The company’s website states that “Model S comes with Autopilot capabilities designed to make your highway driving not only safer, but stress free.”

In a blog post published Thursday, Tesla said that the fatal crash is the first known fatality in more than 130 million miles of Autopilot driving.

“What we know is that the vehicle was on a divided highway with Autopilot engaged when a tractor trailer drove across the highway perpendicular to the Model S,” Tesla said in the post. “Neither Autopilot nor the driver noticed the white side of the tractor trailer against a brightly lit sky, so the brake was not applied. The high ride height of the trailer combined with its positioning across the road and the extremely rare circumstances of the impact caused the Model S to pass under the trailer, with the bottom of the trailer impacting the windshield of the Model S.”

‘Beyond Saddened’

Tesla said that the “customer who died in this crash had a loving family and we are beyond saddened by their loss. He was a friend to Tesla and the broader EV community, a person who spent his life focused on innovation and the promise of technology and who believed strongly in Tesla’s mission. We would like to extend our deepest sympathies to his family and friends.”

Tesla began rolling out its Autopilot features in October. Autopilot is a step toward autonomous or self-driving cars, and includes features like automatic lane changing, auto steering and the ability of the vehicle to parallel park itself. In release notes about the software updates that are sent to owners, Tesla stresses that drivers still maintain responsibility for safe driving and should keep their hands on the wheel at all times.

“Similar to the autopilot functions in airplanes, you need to maintain control and responsibility of your vehicle while enjoying the convenience of Autopilot in Model S,” Tesla has said.

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