Traffic is driving me nuts. Am going to build a tunnel boring machine and just start digging…
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 17, 2016
So, Elon Musk’s cryptic Tweets on Saturday about getting into the tunneling business has had yours truly and many others speculating about what he’s up to this time. Is it for the Hyperloop? Underground colonies on Mars?
Nothing so grandiose, apparently. They were inspired by something much darker, actually.
A source tells me the tweets appear to be related to a horrific hit-and-run accident in which a car hit three pedestrians outside of SpaceX’s headquarters earlier that morning.
Los Angeles County Fire Department paramedics responded at 2:15 a.m. and took all three victims to a local hospital. The extent of their injuries was not immediately known.
The three were struck in a marked crossing at Crewnshaw Boulevard and Rocket Road. It was unknown if they were employees of the rocket manufacturer.
Musk’s tweets about tunneling came about three hours later.
Traffic on Crenshaw Boulevard is usually heavy, and there have been a lot of complaints about safety from employees who park their cars across the street, the source said. Crossing guards are in place during peak traffic hours to help workers cross the street safely.
Musk has been wanting to dig a tunnel under Crenshaw Boulevard to alleviate the safety concerns, the source said.
Although the identities of the victims are unknown, it’s unlikely that anyone other than SpaceX employees would be crossing the street in that industrial area at that hour of the morning, the source said.
That Musk tweeted about entering the tunneling business without mentioning the accident and expressing sympathy for those injured was disturbing, the source added.