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Rep. Kevin Brady writes letter, urging Tesla's full cooperation into crash investigation

Two men - Dr. William Varner and Everette Talbot - were killed when the Tesla Model S hit a tree and caught fire.

HOUSTON — U.S. Rep Kevin Brady is calling on Tesla and the company’s co-founder, Elon Musk, to cooperate with the investigation into last weekend’s deadly crash and to be transparent.

It was late Saturday, April 17, near The Woodlands when investigators say Dr. William Varner and Everette Talbot were killed in a fiery wreck as the Model S struck a tree and caught fire. According to Harris County Precinct 4 Constable Mark Herman, one of the men was found in the front passenger seat and the other in the back seat.

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Herman claimed last weekend that his investigators determined no one was in the driver’s seat at the time of impact.

“As local and federal authorities investigate the cause of the crash and efforts to extinguish the wreckage that cost innocent lives, I urge Tesla’s complete and full cooperation with investigators, including granting access to al data logs from the crash to those investigators,” Brady wrote in his letter.

Brady, who represents the Texas' Eighth district, also urged Tesla to cooperate with federal investigators looking into vehicles with the autopilot feature.

Earlier this week, Musk commented on the wreck in a reply to a Wall Street Journal tweet, tweeting in part, “Data logs recovered so far show Autopilot was not enabled & this car did not purchase FSD (Full self-driving). Moreover, standard Autopilot would require lane lines to turn on, which this street did not have.

The Harris County Precinct 4 Constable’s Office says they’ve issued a warrant to see the logs, something Brady says he supports. Federal investigators have been at the crash site.  

In his letter, Brady calls for transparency about the wreck, including several questions he says he wants answer to.

Some of the questions include whether the car was able to detect if someone was in the driver’s seat if Autopilot wasn’t enabled and if it's able to accelerate. He also asks if any other driver assistance feature was enabled.

You can read Brady’s full letter below

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