Examining Tesla’s Safety Practices with Spotlight on Risk Management

by | Jun 23, 2024

Recently in June 2024, a harrowing incident in Arizona saw a toddler trapped in a Tesla after its battery died without warning amid record heat waves. The vehicle’s failure to alert the driver to the battery issue in such extreme conditions brought significant scrutiny to Tesla’s safety protocols. This incident raises pressing questions about Tesla’s commitment to safety and risk management.

Tesla’s Safety Issues: A Case Study

Tesla has faced several notable safety failures globally, including issues with their Autopilot system, sudden unintended acceleration, battery and thermal management problems, and suspension failures.

Autopilot System Failures:

Tesla’s Autopilot system has been involved in numerous crashes, leading to multiple investigations by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). These crashes often resulted from the system failing to detect obstacles or disengaging unexpectedly.

Sudden Unintended Acceleration:

Several reports and an NHTSA review highlighted incidents of sudden unintended acceleration in Tesla vehicles, posing significant safety risks.

Battery and Thermal Management Issues:

Tesla has experienced incidents involving battery fires, typically triggered by failures in the thermal management system, particularly in high-temperature environments.

Suspension Failures:

Recent scrutiny by Norway’s traffic safety regulator pointed to potential suspension failures in Tesla vehicles, indicating reliability issues in critical components.

Continuous Improvement in Risk Management: A Necessity for Organizational Excellence

Tesla has a risk management framework in place, comprising four pillars: country, industry, operational, and financial risks. However, its safety protocols appear insufficient. Despite covering multiple risk areas, the framework fails to fully address critical safety concerns related to vehicle operation and consumer safety.

Safety Comes Last’ at Tesla, Expert Says

Risk management is a dynamic and evolving field that demands continuous vigilance, dedicated effort, and periodic reviews. Organizations must avoid complacency, continuously refining their risk management strategies, tools, and processes to remain effective. This involves learning from past incidents, integrating feedback, and staying informed about industry best practices.

Lessons from Tesla’s Safety Failures

The safety failures at Tesla highlight several key lessons for organizations in the realm of enterprise risk management. First, it is crucial to ensure that safety protocols are comprehensive and proactive, addressing all potential risks. Second, continuous monitoring and improvement of safety measures are essential to adapt to new challenges and technologies. Finally, transparent communication and accountability are vital to maintain consumer trust and safety standards.

The Dynamic Nature of Risk Management

Evolving Threat Landscape:

  • Risks are not static; they evolve with changes in technology, market conditions, regulatory environments, and societal expectations.
  • New vulnerabilities can emerge from advancements in technology, shifts in consumer behavior, and changes in operational contexts. Staying ahead requires a proactive approach to identifying and mitigating these evolving risks.

Continuous Improvement:

  • Risk management should be seen as an ongoing process of continuous improvement. Organizations must regularly revisit and refine their risk management strategies, tools, and processes to ensure they remain effective.
  • This involves learning from past incidents, staying informed about industry best practices, and integrating feedback from stakeholders.

The Importance of Periodic Reviews

Regular Assessments:

  • Conducting regular risk assessments and audits is crucial to identify gaps and weaknesses in current risk management practices. This helps in addressing issues before they escalate into significant problems.
  • Periodic reviews ensure that risk management practices are aligned with the organization’s evolving objectives and external conditions.

Adapting to Change:

  • Organizations must be agile in their approach to risk management, adapting to changes in the internal and external environment. This includes responding to new regulations, technological advancements, and emerging risks.
  • Regular reviews enable organizations to update their risk management frameworks to address new challenges effectively.

Dedicated Effort and Resources

Commitment from Leadership:

  • Effective risk management requires a commitment from the organization’s leadership. This includes providing adequate resources, fostering a culture of risk awareness, and ensuring accountability at all levels.
  • Leadership should champion the importance of continuous improvement and periodic reviews, setting the tone for the entire organization.

Specialized Teams:

  • Establishing specialized teams focused on risk management can enhance an organization’s ability to manage risks effectively. These teams should include experts in various fields such as cybersecurity, compliance, operational risk, and safety.
  • Dedicated teams ensure that there is focused attention on monitoring, assessing, and mitigating risks consistently.

Introducing ARiMI Risk Management Courses

To support organizations in achieving excellence in risk management, ARiMI offers professional certifications that equip individuals with the knowledge and skills necessary to implement effective risk management strategies. These courses cover various aspects of risk management, from foundational principles to advanced techniques, ensuring that participants are well-prepared to handle the dynamic nature of risks in today’s complex environment.

For more information on ARiMI’s professional and fundamental risk management certifications, visit: