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Tesla goes up in flames!

Discussion in 'Model S' started by Frank88, Jun 15, 2018.

  1. jboy210

    jboy210 Supporting Member

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    It happens.

    According the National Fire Prevention Association, there were 174,000 highway car fires in the US in 2015. They resulted in 445 deaths and 1,550 injuries. And resulted in $1.2 Billion in property damage. No split on mention of propulsion source, but no doubt most were ICE vehicles.

    FWIW, in 1980 there were 456,000 vehicle fires with 650 deaths and 2,850 injuries. Resulting in $1.3 (in 2015 dollars) damage. And all those were ICE cars.

    https://www.nfpa.org/News-and-Research/Fire-statistics-and-reports/Fire-statistics/Vehicle-fires/Highway-vehicle-fires
     
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  2. chronopc

    chronopc Active Member

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    Interesting that a car with a internal combustion engine powered by gasoline would be more susceptible to fire.
     
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  3. McRat

    McRat Well-Known Member

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    In the USA: 2 puncture fires, WA/TN. Impacts: Lake Forest+Irvine+Mountain View CA, Indianapolis, Daytona Beach. Unknown, Los Angeles while driving. That's 8 from the newspapers. There have been at least 4 internationally. Japan, Mexico, Canada, Norway also in the papers. The true amount could be higher, especially internationally. This is assuming all car fires are reported globally.

    There are about 270 million vehicles in the US as of 2018, and 0.2 million Teslas.
    The highest risk for vehicle fires are carburated vehicles, modified vehicles, motorhomes, and motorcycles. With the exception of a low # of MC's these do not exist in EV form.
     
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  4. Az_Rael

    Az_Rael Supporting Member

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    I don't think they can know that there are only 8 worldwide just based on the wikipedia and news reports.

    While I was watching the salvage auctions for my totaled S to show up, I saw several S and X vehicles pass through with fire damage. Now, there is no way to know why the fires happened (could be a house fire, who knows), but a couple had accident damage and fire damage. None of those were reported in the news.

    I think Teslas are less likely to catch fire. But trying to create stats from just news articles is crazy. They would need to get the insurance data to really know how many have caught fire.
     
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  5. chronopc

    chronopc Active Member

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    Wouldn't this be true of ICE vehicles as well? It seems like ICE vehicles fire are even more likely to be under reported because people simply don't really care.
     
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  6. BriansTesla

    BriansTesla Old school meets new tech

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    Electrical failures are the second leading cause of car fires. I'm not sure why Teslas would be immune to those so some fires are to be expected, even "spontaneous" fires. I suspect any non-accident related fires are "spontaneous", and these are common in ICE vehicles.
    I've had occasional ones myself. The last was an alternator failure in a 2001 Excursion.
     
  7. McRat

    McRat Well-Known Member

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    Absolutely. All my posts included was the number of reported US Tesla battery fires I could find in <5 minutes. And the correct data for vehicles. There aren't 263 million cars, that was total motor vehicles in 2016.

    EV fires are not a big risk, but if you doctor the data, then folk could wonder if something is being hidden.
     
  8. lklundin

    lklundin Active Member

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    Stop. As a maintainer of the above cited Wikipedia list, I can state as a fact that the list there is not complete.

    Of non-accident Tesla Model S fires comes to mind just now:

    in some US garage, while charging,
    Supercharging in Norway,
    Test driving in France, and
    LA this last week-end (possibly a post-accident fire)

    The number of Tesla Model S/X that have burned in direct connection with an accident is much larger.
     
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  9. S4WRXTTCS

    S4WRXTTCS Active Member

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    The problem with the statistics people use is they include old cars that have been on the road for a very long time.

    There are some cars like a VW camper van where you're really lucky if it DOESN'T catch on fire.

    Also, there was an additional Tesla fire where it wasn't involved in a crash. That one happened at a Supercharger in Norway, and the root cause was an electrical contact that wasn't tightened down properly.

    My biggest concern with the Tesla isn't even the battery, but what happens to the cars when they are not maintained. What's the risk factor then?

    With a new properly maintained Tesla the risk is likely below that of a properly maintained/newish ICE car.
     
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  10. bhzmark

    bhzmark Active Member

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    Then get busy please.
     
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  11. S4WRXTTCS

    S4WRXTTCS Active Member

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    #111 S4WRXTTCS, Jun 19, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2018
    I'd have a major issue trying to figure out what started a fire in my house if it ever happened, and burned down my entire house.

    Was it the Tesla?
    Was it the electric longboard?
    Was it the other electric longboard?
    Was it my Pedal Assist Mountain Bike?
    Was it my Pedal Assist Roadbike
    Was it any of the batteries for my lawn equipment.
    Was it a drone battery (lately I've been storing them in protective poaches because of my concern).
    Was it the Tesla High Powered wall connector (there have been a few issues reported with them).

    The list is so long that I'm surprised my house hasn't burned down.
     
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  12. chronopc

    chronopc Active Member

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    It started from the gasoline you poured and the match you lit to claim the insurance.
     
  13. S4WRXTTCS

    S4WRXTTCS Active Member

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    That's another complication in data gathering.

    Some fires were caused deliberately either in trying to hide evidence, or for insurance claim reasons.
     
  14. Gixx1300R

    Gixx1300R Member

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    35542621_10156400493036241_2908021909721448448_n.jpg
     
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  15. lklundin

    lklundin Active Member

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  16. bhzmark

    bhzmark Active Member

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    #116 bhzmark, Jun 20, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2018
    This is interesting. And this is the statistic that is actually relevant to safety and no news org would ever have the sense to report it. Just as they never give per capita numbers but always absolute or aggregate numbers.

    "Tesla claims that gasoline powered cars are about 11 times more likely to catch fire than a Tesla. It says the best comparison is fires per 1 billion miles driven. It says the 300,000 Teslas on the road have been driven a total of 7.5 billion miles, and about 40 fires have been reported. That works out to five fires for every billion miles traveled, compared to a rate of 55 fires per billion miles traveled in gasoline cars."

    "The biggest difference is the time it takes to ignite. Gasoline fires start almost immediately when gasoline comes in contact with a spark or flame, and spreads rapidly. Battery fires typically take some time to achieve the heat necessary to start the fire. In some instances, that delay is very good news. It can let the occupants of a car involved in a crash to get out of the vehicle before the fire starts. "

    Are electric cars more likely to catch fire?
     
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  17. Malbrough

    Malbrough Member

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    Thanks for the CNN article. Everyone who knows I have a Tesla (including mom) has recently asked if I'm worried about it catching fire. I posted the article and this comment: I'm 11 times less worried about a Tesla catching fire than I am worried about a gas car catching fire.
     
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  18. Gwgan

    Gwgan Almost a wagon

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    So Chelsea Handler traded in her Model S because of this car fire. Chelsea Handler on Twitter
    She may not be the only one to do that. Has there been any published news about why this particular car caught fire? Reality may help temper generalizations.
     
  19. bhzmark

    bhzmark Active Member

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    Also




     
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  20. S4WRXTTCS

    S4WRXTTCS Active Member

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    I'm confused by why a psychic would trade in a car based on a fear of what happened to a friends car. Shouldn't she know if her car is going to catch on fire? Or are Tesla's psychic proof?

    The problem with reality is the reality of lithium ion batteries isn't really a good one. The reality is it takes a lot of effort to make a safe battery especially with so many cells.

    It's a testament to the design of the Tesla battery pack that the fire was so contained, and it didn't spread.

    I'm not sure we'll ever know why that particular car caught fire. It's the only one I know off where the battery itself supposedly caught fire without a crash/debris/etc. The only other fire reports have involved electrical contacts that weren't properly tightened down.
     
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