Tesla's New 'Dog Mode' Could Be More Dangerous Than You Think
Pooch owners are welcoming a new car feature that allows pups to stay cool when left inside, but there are fears some parents could use it for their children.
Dog-Mode allows a pet owner to leave their fluffy friend inside a vehicle alone, without getting heat stroke.
The car's screen can display the cabin temperature, as well as a message that says that "my owner will be back soon", to ensure people walking past don't panic and call the police.
It's one of several features Tesla is introducing that focuses on improving safety and security and will be available on the Model 3, before being rolled out on Model S and Model X.
But there are concerns the move could lead to complacency.
"I don't think you should be encouraging anyone to leave dogs in the car, because then do they think they can do the same thing with kids? I think it's dangerous," Studio 10's Angela Bishop told the panel on Friday.
Leaving your pet or child in the car alone is extremely dangerous, even on a cooler day the temperature inside a parked car can be up to 30 degrees hotter than the outside temperature.
If it's sunny and 20 degrees, the inside of the car could hit a sweltering 40 degrees within 10 minutes, putting children and pets in serious danger.
Awesome idea BUT can we please pray 🙏 that the folks @Tesla and the brilliant @elonmusk 🚀make sure that people don't use this as an excuse to leave their kids unattended in cars and have thought of a fail safe....? (In car child vs. Dog detection?)— burntable (@realburntable) February 14, 2019
"Introducing Dog Mode: set a cabin temperature to keep your dog comfortable while letting passersby know they don't need to worry"-@Tesla Always worry. Worry about your dog, not car. Much worse if child has been left. Add 'fail safe' alarm if temp rises.https://t.co/DuSHihdJWT— Archfeldspar (@Archfeldspar1) February 14, 2019
"Why don't they develop technology that sets off an alarm off if you leave a child in the car?" Bishop suggested. "It's only a second, you think you're just running in but always, always take your kids out of the car".