A Tesla has crashed into a police car and another vehicle while on Autopilot in the US.

Both the police car and the other vehicle, which had broken down, were stationary at the time of the incident.

The driver told police that he put his Tesla Model 3 on Autopilot so that he could check on his dog in the back.

The crash occurred on Interstate 95 in Norwalk, Connecticut, in the early hours of Saturday morning local time.

The police car was parked behind the broken down vehicle with its blue lights flashing, as it waited for a tow truck.

The Tesla, which starts from £42,000 in the UK and $36,000 in the US, struck the rear of the police car and continued travelling forward, leading it to hit the car in front.

Police said no one was injured.

“The operator of the Tesla stated that he had his vehicle on ‘auto-pilot’ and explained that he was checking on his dog which was in the back seat,” wrote Connecticut State Police on Facebook.

The police force added: “Regardless of your vehicle’s capabilities, when operating a vehicle your full attention is required at all times to ensure safe driving.”

The driver was charged with reckless driving and reckless endangerment.

This is not the first time a Tesla has crashed while on Autopilot. In total, there have been at least five fatalities worldwide involving Tesla vehicles on Autopilot.

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) in the US is currently investigating accidents caused by Autopilot.

Tesla did not immediately respond to a request for comment. However, the firm does not recommend that drivers remove their hands from the wheel while using the Autopilot feature.

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