Jason Tuatara (43) drove his new Tesla Model 3 for just a month when on April 26th there was an incident that shocked him for life. A travel agent from Blackpool, UK, had just finished a business trip with his husband, Alan Miles, and “when I drove back in the driveway…the wheel just fell off!” Stunned Jason tweeted to the car manufacturer, adding pictures to his message. “The steering wheel just fell off today! I’m worried the rest of the car is going to fall apart, too! Can you find out what happened to a car that’s only one month old?” He went on: “How can this happen to the Tesla, the safest car in the world?”
Jason and Alan picked up the ordered car on March 20. “We couldn’t drive it much because of the quarantine, but we were still able to drive 340 miles, including when my nieces and nieces were in the car,” says the man, imagining the danger that a poorly attached steering wheel could pose. On the day of the incident, “We drove about 20 miles. Fortunately, the steering wheel fell off at the end of the trip. He literally held the wires in my hands. I was in shock. My husband… wouldn’t have believed it if he hadn’t seen it with his own eyes.” When Jason contacted Tesla, the employee was surprised to hear. She said she’d never heard of it. Within 90 minutes, the car was picked up and Jason was brought back with a Jaguar, who was 1, as a replacement. Jason said he was surprised it wasn’t the Tesla, but obviously that was all the company had. His car was returned the next day with the steering wheel attached. “The Tesla confirmed that the steering wheel wasn’t bolted to the body of the car, and they’re investigating what might have happened in the production of the car,” said the car owner. “The Driving and Cecile Agency here in the UK is also investigating.” The Tesla has not yet commented on the incident. But Jason claims that he’s suffered psychological harm. “I’m gradually getting used to driving again, and we’ve been assured by the company that this is still the safest car in Britain and it can’t happen again. But my confidence has been shaken by the incident,” says the man. “I can’t afford to buy another car … I don’t get the money now, planning people’s travels. “I feel like I’ve been let down,” he admitted.