Earlier this week, Tesla launched Lane Departure Avoidance and Emergency Lane Departure Avoidance safety features to ensure that drivers remain in their lane even when Autopilot is disabled.
According to Tesla's quarterly safety reports, "drivers using Autopilot register fewer accidents per mile than those without it," in part because the mode keeps drivers from drifting from their lane, by ensuring that their hands are on the wheel.
As these two Autopilot precautions have been so effective at reducing the frequency of motor accidents, Tesla is launching two similar safety features that are active even when Autopilot is disabled: Lane Departure Avoidance and Emergency Lane Departure Avoidance.
Lane Departure Avoidance is an opt-in feature that will automatically apply corrective steering to make sure a driver's vehicle stays in its lane. When the car drifts out of the lane, a series of "hands-on reminders and alerts" will activate and, if a driver's hands are not detected on the wheel, the vehicle will automatically slow down to 15 mph below the speed limit and turn on the hazard lights. This works at speeds between 25 and 90 mph.
Emergency Lane Departure Avoidance, on the other hand, will steer the vehicle back into the departing lane if a potential risk or collision is detected, or the car is near the edge of the road. Unlike the former feature, this will automatically be enabled at the start of every drive and can be disabled for a single drive within the Autopilot Controls menu.
Both Lane Departure Avoidance and Emergency Lane Departure Avoidance became available yesterday via an over-the-air software update. They will roll out incrementally to all models built after October 2016, starting with Tesla Model 3 owners.