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Tesla pauses crash-risky gaming feature amid probe

The auto safety regulator announced this week that they were investigating a feature in Tesla cars that allows drivers to play games on a touchscreen pad while the car is in motion. 

The video game investigation covers more than 500,000 vehicles, Models 3,S,X, and Y. Games such as solitaire can be played on a touch screen, including in every Tesla vehicle, a feature that was highlighted in a New York Times report earlier this month.

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The NHTSA said on Thursday that Tesla will be putting forth an update so that the Passenger Play feature is disabled while vehicles are moving. The agency’s investigation, however, will continue. 

“The Vehicle Safety Act prohibits manufacturers from selling vehicles with defects posing unreasonable risks to safety, including technologies that distract drivers from driving safely,” their statement read.

All Tesla vehicles should be updated this week.

The investigation was kicked off after a complaint said onlookers could clearly see people were able to play games in their Tesla vehicles. Its Office of Defects said later in a report that the Passenger Play feature could in fact be used while a vehicle is moving, a potential distraction they say could “increase the risk of a crash.”

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