Tragic — and very strange.
Kevin Turen, a producer of the controversial HBO show "Euphoria," died following a medical emergency while driving his ten-year-old son home from a tennis tournament over the weekend.
A striking detail: as TMZ reports, Turen was driving a Tesla with its Autopilot driver assistance feature turned on when the emergency occurred.
And no, the situation likely wasn't a result of Turen placing too much trust in his Tesla's Autopilot or falling asleep at the wheel — going by the latest report, Turen died as a result of anknown medical condition, with his son taking over control of the car, pulling over, and calling 911.
Turen's father Edward Turen told TMZ that drugs and alcohol were not involved and an official cause of death has yet to be announced.
It's an interesting example of a driver assistance feature interacting with a real-world crisis in complex ways. While the Tesla of course wasn't able to do anything about Turen's condition, the incident does make you wonder what would've happened to the producer and his son without the driver assistance feature being turned on.
Rest in Peace
Further complicating matters, the death comes on top of a flurry of news and discourse about self-driving and driver-assist features. Tesla's controversies with its Autopilot and Full Self-Driving features are well-documented and the subject of increasing government scrutiny, while General Motors' self-driving car division Cruise just took the drastic step of pulling all its autonomous vehicles off the road — even the ones with a safety driver — after a series of incidents.
And on top of it all, the government's recordkeeping on incidents involving the features is sounding surprisingly spotty.
Regardless, we'll be watching closely to hear more about the circumstances leading to Turen's death — which was only the latest related to "Euphoria," with 25-year-old actor Angus Cloud having passed away from an accidental overdose in July.
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