Tesla to implement new hazard light system via software update

By Kevin Armstrong
Tesla to implement new hazards light pattern that drastically improves safety
Tesla to implement new hazards light pattern that drastically improves safety
Emergency Safety Solutions/YouTube

A small, four-year-old company in Houston, Texas, has been using a Tesla Model 3 to demonstrate its revolutionary hazard warning system. Now, their system will be in millions of Teslas.

Emergency Safety Solutions, Inc. (ESS), is the creator of HELP, which stands for Hazard Enhanced Location Protocol. The company claims its system significantly improves driver safety. Tesla, which usually develops its systems, and rarely uses external programs, will be the first automaker to implement HELP in its vehicles.

ESS says that every seven minutes, there is a crash involving a disabled vehicle on American roadways. These crashes kill or injure 15,000 people annually. The company also states the main factor in those crashes is an ineffective hazard light system that is not getting the attention of drivers. The hazard light system was created more than 70 years ago and hasn't been improved since.

According to ESS, HELP will: "provide advanced lighting alerts and digital location-based alerts to greatly improve advance warning communications to drivers." Virginia Tech Transportation Institute studied several lighting combinations and found that 4hz to 6Hz flash frequencies greatly improved drivers' attention. The current system is 1.5Hz.

Researchers then took the 5Hz system to the street and found that drivers responded 12 seconds earlier. They also discovered that drivers moved over 360 meters or nearly four football fields away from the disabled car. In addition, drivers moving to the left of a disabled car jumped from 30 percent with the current system to 87 percent with HELP.

The flashing lights will undoubtedly improve safety, but the system also sends a digital signal to alert drivers using in-car or phone navigation that there is a hazard ahead. The early warning will allow drivers to be warned much sooner than just the visual blinking lights system. Additionally, the HELP system can be manually activated or it will automatically turn on if a collision is detected or an airbag is deployed.

Tom Metzger, CEO of ESS, said, "Tesla is a leader in bringing first-time innovation to passenger vehicles and is leading the way by implementing HELP technology on potentially millions of Tesla vehicles worldwide. It's a monumental step in the effort to overcome the troubling safety issue of crashes into disabled and vulnerable vehicles, which tragically injure or kill tens of thousands around the world each year."

New Hazard Light Pattern on a Model 3

Tesla will implement these changes to these existing vehicles through a software update. It's a rare step for Tesla, which usually creates its own systems and improves traditional programs (Tesla recently improved the seatbelt).

This time Tesla found a company that has done everything necessary to improve this aspect of vehicle safety, so why recreate the wheel?

The Cybertruck Saga: Steam, Real World Tests, Celebrity Ownership, and Bulletproof?

By Kevin Armstrong
Cybertruck News
Cybertruck News

A glance at X at any moment reveals a continuous stream of fresh, intriguing, and sometimes eccentric content revolving around the Cybertruck. Since its production debut in December 2023, Tesla's latest sensation has commanded attention. Cybertruck's presence grows with each new owner, spawning a flurry of YouTube videos, social media posts on X, and articles across news outlets.

Disappointment for Gamers

While Tesla's Model S and Model X received accolades for integrating Steam gaming, the Cybertruck falls short, mirroring early builds of its predecessors in computer specifications. Notably, hacker @greentheonly insights suggest the Cybertruck's hardware may lack compatibility, dampening hopes for gaming enthusiasts. This is a surprise, considering the vehicle looks straight out of a video game!

Celebrity Ownership Expands

The list of celebrities acquiring a Cybertruck continues to grow. Music icon, Jay-Z and Beyoncé's recent purchase of a Cybertruck, styled in a sleek matte black finish reminiscent of a Batmobile, made the roads on social media. The power couple's endorsement of the Cybertruck reinforces its status as a symbol of luxury and innovation in the automotive world. Their Cybertruck delivery came just days after Kim Kardashian lit up social media with her “Cool Car Pool Mom” post.

Thwarting Break-In Attempts

Beyond its celebrity allure, the Cybertruck has proven its practicality in real-world scenarios, demonstrating its resilience against break-in attempts. Recent incidents have highlighted the vehicle's robust construction, with its stainless steel exterior and shatter-resistant windows effectively deterring vandalism. Despite attempts to breach the vehicle's security, the Cybertruck emerged relatively unscathed, reaffirming its status as a reliable choice for safety-conscious consumers.

Bullet Test: Adin Ross's Impact

Youtuber Adin Ross recently subjected the vehicle to gunfire, testing its ability to withstand ballistic impacts. Ross's video, which gained significant traction online, captured the Cybertruck enduring 9mm ammunition without sustaining critical damage, further validating Tesla's claims of creating an apocalypse-proof vehicle. While such extreme tests may seem unconventional, they underscore Cybertruck's reputation for toughness and resilience in challenging environments.

Toughness on Display

The Cybertruck's durability extends beyond security features, as evidenced by its performance in road accidents. In instances of rear-end collisions, the vehicle's stainless steel exoskeleton has shown remarkable resilience, minimizing damage and ensuring occupant safety. While concerns persist regarding the lack of a traditional crumple zone, Cybertruck's design philosophy prioritizes structural integrity, providing peace of mind for drivers in unforeseen circumstances.

Range Exceeds Expectations

Edmunds put the Cybertruck to the test, equipped with all-terrain tires. The vehicle surpassed initial estimates by covering 334 miles (537km) on a single charge, outperforming advertised figures and showcasing its efficiency on the road. For more range, Tesla has a range extender available.

Snow Trax Modification

One of the most captivating developments surrounding Cybertruck is the innovative CyberTrax modification, spearheaded by automotive modification luminary Dave Sparks. With an eye for adventure and a penchant for pushing boundaries, Sparks has embarked on a project that promises to transform the Cybertruck into a snow-conquering beast. The CyberTrax modification, aimed at enhancing the vehicle's off-road capabilities, has garnered widespread attention and support, even earning recognition from Tesla itself.

Ramping Up Production and Expansion

As Tesla continues to ramp up production of the Cybertruck, anticipation grows for its availability in international markets. With early units already sold in the U.S., Tesla's Vice President of Public Policy and Business Development has confirmed plans for expansion into Canada, signaling further growth opportunities for the electric pickup. Despite regulatory challenges in certain regions, Tesla remains committed to delivering the Cybertruck's innovative design to a global audience.

In conclusion, Tesla's Cybertruck continues to captivate audiences with its groundbreaking performance, celebrity endorsements, and ongoing advancements. From surpassing range expectations to withstanding gunfire, the Cybertruck has proven its mettle in various real-world scenarios, reaffirming its status as a revolutionary addition to the automotive landscape.

Tesla Updates Its App, Making It More Intuitive With New Menu and Reorganized Vehicle and App Settings

By Not a Tesla App Staff
Tesla has added a new menu to its app that organizes various settings
Tesla has added a new menu to its app that organizes various settings

Today, Tesla has updated its app to introduce a new menu that reorganizes vehicle, home energy, and account settings in a more logical and more discoverable manner.

App Update

Tesla updated its app to version 4.30 back on February 15th for iOS and followed suit with an Android update shortly thereafter. The app update included some significant changes such as a new Home Energy demo, Wall Connector charging charts, and a better view of your last Supercharger session.

However, the addition of the new menu arrived today thanks to under-the-hood changes Tesla had already made.

New Menu

The changes in the latest Tesla app don't require an app update
The changes in the latest Tesla app don't require an app update

The main change in the app is the new menu which replaces the user's profile picture.

Since this area was already used to change Tesla account and app settings and Tesla product preferences, the menu icon is more intuitive than an avatar.

However, after tapping into the menu, the user is greeted with a completely reorganized section. Instead of featuring horizontally scrolling tiles for different products and features, which was getting fairly long, Tesla has consolidated the features and now presents them vertically.

In the new profile section, Tesla has grouped lumped in account information and app settings. This includes personal information, order history as well as app settings, including calendar sync and app notifications.

Charging is now a top-level feature instead of being buried in the Account section. This section highlights your most recent Supercharger charging session which was redesigned during the 4.30 app update. It also lets you manage your payment method and view your Supercharger history.

My Products is the new way to add or remove Tesla products from your account. It now nicely displays all of your existing Tesla products and lets you dig into each one. By diving into each product, you're able to give access to another user, remove the product from your Tesla account if applicable, rename the product, or jump into the product view.

Vehicle and Home Screens

If you have a Tesla vehicle and a Home product, such as Solar or a Wall Connector, the way to switch between products is to swipe to the side. However, this wasn't very intuitive and Tesla has now added a dropdown next to the Home or Vehicle name that brings up a quick menu that lets you jump to other products.

If you already have app version 4.30, there's no need to update your app, just open the existing app and you should see the new menu in the top right. However, if you're still on Tesla app 4.29.5 or earlier, head over to the app store and upgrade to the latest Tesla app to see these new features.

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