By on October 29, 2013

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A second Tesla Model S has burned following an accident, this time near Merida, Mexico. Tesla Motors issued a statement saying the customer was unhurt after crash in which the Model S hit a concrete barrier. The accident occurred on October 19 according to local news reports that say that the luxury electric car was speeding and “hit a raised pedestrian crossing and briefly took flight before crashing into a wall and tree.” Photos and video posted of the crash’s aftermath show the front end damaged and flames burning the car.

“We were able to contact the driver quickly and are pleased that he is safe,” Liz Jarvis-Shean, a Tesla spokesperson, said Monday in an e-mailed statement. “This was a significant accident where the car was traveling at such a high speed that it smashed through a concrete wall and then hit a large tree, yet the driver walked away from the car with no permanent injury.”

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said last week that it found no evidence that the October 1 fire that engulfed the front end of a Model S in Washington state after the car hit metal debris that punctured the battery pack was not due to any defects or violations of U.S. safety standards.

According to Tesla, both customers plan to purchase new Model S cars to replace their burned Teslas. “He is appreciative of the safety and performance of the car and has asked if we can expedite delivery of his next Model S,” Jarvis-Shean said about the owner of the car that burned in Mexico.

 

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58 Comments on “A Second Tesla Model S Burns...”


  • avatar
    dwford

    Can we have some context with a story about all the other cars that crashed and caught fire that day?

    • 0 avatar

      This is nothing more than a REPUBLICAN SPEARHEADED WITCHHUNT.

      I’m 100% sure that the day this Model S went down at least 10 other people got into accidents with the best selling luxury cars: E350 and LexusRX.

      STOP ATTACKING MY TESLA SHARES.

    • 0 avatar
      Larry P2

      Seriously? Was this story copied from The Onion?

    • 0 avatar
      mcs

      >> Can we have some context with a story about all the other cars that crashed and caught fire that day?

      Good point. I took a quick look and stopped after finding several within the last few days. If I had the time, I’m sure I could find quite a few for the exact date.

      http://www.lowellsun.com/news/ci_24401487/police-driver-left-crash-scene-car-fire?source=rss_viewed

      http://www.milforddailynews.com/newsnow/x825425511/Man-flown-to-hospital-after-crash-car-fire-in-Uxbridge

      http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/queens/truck-driver-saves-motorist-car-fire-back-work-article-1.1490180

      http://www.autonews.com/article/20131028/OEM11/131029885/jeep-liberty-suvs-investigated-by-u-s-for-door-fire-complaints#axzz2j84RgG2C

      http://edition.cnn.com/2013/10/28/world/asia/china-beijing-tiananmen-vehicle/

      http://wgntv.com/2013/10/25/car-crashes-into-townhouse-causes-fire-in-lake-county/

      • 0 avatar
        FuzzyPlushroom

        Regarding that first link…

        “‘There is no Massachusetts General Law for driving a car with flames coming out of it,’ Deputy Chief Richard Burrows said. ‘But we highly recommend, if your car is on fire, that you pull over and call the fire department.’”

        This is good to know.

    • 0 avatar

      I just read the note on Merida’s newspaper in spanish, it states that the car crashed not once but 3 times and hit an electric fence, that can count as for starting a fire…

      Also another car (a Dodge Btw) got on fire due to an electrical failure, on the same day and city.

      Saludos!

  • avatar
    doctor olds

    Two crash caused fires on the small population of Teslas is a VERY high rate.

    If more incidents occur, it will kill the company.

    Volt has far more exposure with NO vehicle fires resulting from crashes, iirc.

    • 0 avatar
      jz78817

      given the description of this crash, I’m fairly confident a gas-powered car would have gone up in flames too. Not reading much noteworthy in this one.

      The first one, yes. hitting something in the road shouldn’t cause that.

      • 0 avatar
        doctor olds

        I have some historic familiarity with fire rates across the industry, though I don’t recall specifics and am giving you gut feel. This rate on the tiny exposure Teslas presently have is a very unappealing issue to discuss with the regulators. If the general vehicle population experienced fires from hitting things at this rate we would see many thousands of them a year. That appears not to be the case.

        Gasoline fueled vehicles very rarely have crashes induce fire.

        Won’t kill the company? The stock took a big hit on the news. I said more will be really bad. Time will tell.

    • 0 avatar
      MarkySparky

      It will not “kill the company”, any more than Michael Hastings reducing his Mercedes to component parts will kill MB.

      What proportion of high-speed/airborne/concrete-impacting/tree-destroying crashes do you expect to be en fuego (or survivable) with ICE cars versus Teslas? The specifics matter, and so far there is ZERO evidence that Teslas are fire-prone or otherwise dangerous. In fact, quite the opposite.

      These stories make the news because Tesla has an active/excitable PR department, the technology is interesting and new, and crashes of $50K cars are more notable than crushed Cruzes.

    • 0 avatar
      krhodes1

      The sample size is still FAR too small to draw any conclusions.

      I would bet that in the long run the Volt WILL have fewer and less spectacular accidents, for the same reason Volvos have fewer and less spectacular accidents than BMWs – the demographics of their drivers. “Douchebag factor”

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    “Speeding car goes airborne after striking obstacle, hits tree, bursts into flames”

    You can’t blame the car for the stupid driver’s behavior, no matter how it’s fueled.

    These stories will eventually fail to make the news once people realize the cars aren’t behaving much different from an ICE on fire.

    • 0 avatar
      ExPatBrit

      Locally a meth head drove his Audi at high speed into a BMW a few weeks ago. The BMW driver burned to death.

      The journalist Michael Hastings crash ended up in a ball of flames.

      You can’t override Newton’s laws.

      It’s amazing that people are trying to say Teslas are unsafe because of this. The cars caught fire, they didn’t explode on impact as an ICE often does.

      Both drivers escaped.

      • 0 avatar
        Pch101

        “The cars caught fire, they didn’t explode on impact as an ICE often does.”

        That does happen a lot. In the movies.

        The most common cause of vehicle fires is some sort of mechanical failure. Crashes as a cause of fire are at the bottom of the list.

        A few more incidents like this, and a NHTSA investigation will be merited.

      • 0 avatar
        bk_moto

        “…they didn’t explode on impact as an ICE often does.”

        That doesn’t actually happen in real life.

      • 0 avatar
        jz78817

        “You can’t override Newton’s laws.”

        you don’t *understand* Newton’s laws, evidently.

        • 0 avatar
          ExPatBrit

          I wasn’t referring to the fuel.

          What part of a fast 3000-4000lb projectile hitting a solid immovable object doesn’t involve some aspect of Isaac Newton’s 2nd law.

          We even measure crash impacts in Gs.

          Stick to cookies (Fig Newtons)!

          • 0 avatar
            jz78817

            “I wasn’t referring to the fuel.”

            pardon my confusion then, since you cited two examples of fiery crashes, brought up Newton’s laws, then failed to expound on why you were mentioning them. Hopefully you’re not one of those people who makes intentionally vague statements in order to give yourself room to weasel out of anything you post.

          • 0 avatar
            ExPatBrit

            “Hopefully you’re not one of those people who makes intentionally vague statements in order to give yourself room to weasel out of anything you post.”

            Nope, but in my spare time I will occasionally reply to posts by supercilious prats who think random conversational internet posts should be formatted like essays in “term papers”.

            Hopefully you are not one of those “people”.

  • avatar
    npaladin2000

    Didn’t CR just recommend these things?

    • 0 avatar
      sitting@home

      I guess their testing just involved doing things like driving at normal speeds on city streets and freeways, not firing the car out of a cannon into the Hoover dam.

      Who would have thought the much beloved Lincoln Town Car would spontaneously combust once stretched to twice its length and filled with flammable furnishings …

      http://abclocal.go.com/kgo/story?section=news/local/peninsula&id=9300233

  • avatar
    Larry P2

    I simply refuse to buy a car that I can’t drive at 100 mph, hit a concrete divider, go completely airborn, and have no fires.

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      Too bad a Stryker can only get up to 70 MPH. Maybe the Bradley/M113 replacement will better suit your needs.

      • 0 avatar
        Larry P2

        Good point! I reword my demand:

        I simply refuse to buy a car that I can’t drive at 100 mph, hit a concrete divider, go completely airborn into collection of IEDs, and have no fires.

        • 0 avatar
          bball40dtw

          I have a good friend that drives an M1A2 Abrams at work. I’ll ask what kind of deals they have on used ones. It comes with bonus features like depleted uranium armor piercing rounds, a 120 MM Cannon, the ability to survive a nuclear holocaust, and the fact that its a tank.

          • 0 avatar
            Pch101

            The armor-piercing rounds are a nice feature, but does it have airbags?

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            Maybe on the M1A3 currently in development, but unfortunetly, drivers and passengers of the M1A2 will have to make do without airbags. I don’t think it has ABS or Bluetooth either. SatNav is standard though.

            Even without airbags, the Abrams tank did will on the NHTSA crash test scores. It drove over the frontal collision test as well as the offset test that seems to be plauguing so many manufacturers.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            They always get you with the N.B.C. survival package, I mean I just wanted the optional alloy treads and TOW launcher and the website forces me to add on N.B.C., so irritating.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            Yeah, all that stuff is in the Desert Storm package.

        • 0 avatar
          SC5door

          Does it require premium fuel? And what is the fuel economy and range?

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            It can run on pretty much any gasoline, diesel, jet fuel, etc. Right now you are looking at .60 MPG on the window sticker. Your mileage may vary.

            The Army is working on a replacement turbine for the Abrams. They are looking for a 33-50% increase in fuel economy. Right now, M1A2s do have rotary engines as APUs for slow speed cruising (under 3 MPH). So basically, an Abrams is like an RX8.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          Desert Storm package? Geez they must think we make D.O.D kind of money, I just want my Abrams and a 12spd stick, ya know?

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            The Tank Urban Survival Kit (TUSK) is a must now. Can’t have insugents sneaking up on you. It includes upgraded armor, thermal imaging + transparent shield for the 240B machine gun, and a remote operating system for the .50 cal.

            If you want something to hoon on a budget may I suggest an M60, Challenger I, or Leopard I?

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            I won’t be caught dead in an M60 but I could go for a Leopard if only I could own one out of warranty, just to many special fluids and systems to break although you do get the right “feel” out of one vs something domestic. I’ve never driven a Challenger I may have to put it on my short list. I could really go for a T-72 but for some reason the Saddam’s WMD dealership by house closed in 2003 and I haven’t been able to find a retailer.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            Try Uganda, Algeria, Egypt, Syria, Iran, or any former Soviet Union succesor state. The Soviet Union gave most their T-72s and T-80s, probably 10000+, to the the former Soviet Republics. Heck, Russia probably has 5000 or more just laying around.

            The closest owner of T-72s would be Cuba. I bet they would give you a sweet deal. Maybe Corey would like a T-72 instead of a Bravada.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Cuba eh? Hey I can stop off buy cigars and assassinate Castro while I’m there and still probably get a steal of a deal with my CUCs if its priced in pesos.

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cuban_convertible_peso

          • 0 avatar
            aristurtle

            Careful with those T-72s. The export versions are markedly inferior (by design) to the soviet domestic model.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            So Russian surplus is the way to go?

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Sounds that way and it doesn’t surprise me. Thanks for the tip Aristurtle.

          • 0 avatar
            ExPatBrit

            Has to be brown, most of the ones I have seen are kind of Khaki.

  • avatar
    Larry P2

    Well an Abrams tank might be nice. Is there a model that goes 120? It needs leather seats too.

    Since I am the kind of guy that starts jonesing for a snow cone just when the temps drop to zero after a major snowstorm:

    http://www.theonion.com/video/snowy-conditions-proving-hazardous-for-nations-idi,18705/

    I should be able to hop in the M1 in a tank top and flipflops at zero degrees, go 120 mph down to the local 7-11, and load it up with slurpees without experiencing anything resembling cold?

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      Haha.

      I think the printed top speed for the Abrams is 42-45 MPH. My tanker friend, although biased, says the Abrams can do almost double that.

      I thought both the Leopard 2 and Challenger 2 tanks were faster than the Abrams, but he insists otherwise. I’m not going to argue with him when he’s gone through simulated battles with both.

  • avatar
    schmitt trigger

    Does the Abrahms include a rearview camera and collision avoidance system? I don’t think I could parallel park one of those without crushing a Fiat or a Smart.

  • avatar
    Kenmore

    A remote controlled Tesla would make an awesome Olympic torch for the final quarter mile or so.

  • avatar
    mor2bz

    This fire was much more dramatic than the first one.
    Fire Departments are going to have to educate their
    firemen to not spray water on a lithium fire. It can cause
    explosions.

  • avatar
    Beerboy12

    I saw two Tesla’s on the way to work yesterday, neither of them were on fire…


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