TMC is an independent, primarily volunteer organization that relies on ad revenue to cover its operating costs. Please consider whitelisting TMC on your ad blocker or making a Paypal contribution here: paypal.me/SupportTMC

Tesla on CBS National News Nov. 19

Discussion in 'News' started by Zythryn, Nov 19, 2013.

  1. Zythryn

    Zythryn MS 70D, MX 90D

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2009
    Messages:
    1,660
    Location:
    Minnesota
    Ben Tracy is doing a piece on Tesla tonight (5:30-6:00 central).
    Just a heads up for anyone that wants to see it.
     
  2. Grendal

    Grendal Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2012
    Messages:
    2,518
    Location:
    Santa Fe, New Mexico
    Here is the video connected to this:

    Tesla car fires under investigation - CBS News Video

    I thought it wasn't too bad. In fact, I thought it was pretty positive toward Tesla.
     
  3. gaswalla

    gaswalla P4201/85/airsusp/pano/19i

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2012
    Messages:
    1,190
    Location:
    San Diego
    yes.. overall very positive... fires in Model S: 3/19,500 (1/6.5k) vs industry standard incidence of 1/1.4k
    they also note the expanded warranty and the ability of TM to issue a software update to raise the car at highway speeds
     
  4. mrdoubleb

    mrdoubleb Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2013
    Messages:
    1,148
    Location:
    Budapest, Hungary
    Wow, I'd go even further. I think it was an excellent report, no sensationalism, putting things into perspective, even mentioning the FW upgrade.
     
  5. Vger

    Vger Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2009
    Messages:
    1,682
    Location:
    Salt Spring Island, BC, Canada
    Indeed. Actual journalism-- sober statements of facts without the snarky innuendoes etc.
     
  6. BillHamp

    BillHamp Banned

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2013
    Messages:
    83
    Location:
    N/A
    I don't know that I would say the reporting was excellent. The problem is that they use the same flawed statistics as Musk did to claim that fire in the Model S is far below that of an ICE car. The NHTSA isn't concerned about fire in general, it is concerned about fire following an accident (namely an undercarriage strike). In that limited circumstance, the Tesla may be MORE vulnerable than an ICE car. So, the real problem is not fire/car, it is fire/accident. More accurately, it is fire/underbody strike. The last stat is not available or at least not easy to find. However, when it comes to fires/accident, Tesla is definitely on the border of statistical significance. That is why the NHTSA is investigating. There may be a very specific vulnerability (no one could have predicted necessarily) that would be easy to remedy.
     
  7. Jhall118

    Jhall118 Member

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2012
    Messages:
    338
    Location:
    Seattle, WA

    You can't have statistical significance with 2 or 3 cases. Please stop.
     
  8. tomas

    tomas Traded in 9 rep bars for M3, used to be somebody!

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2012
    Messages:
    2,100
    Location:
    Chicago/Montecito
    The mission of the NHTSA is to be concerned about passenger safety. Period. Fire, strike, etc only to extent it impacts passenger safety.
     
  9. ElectricAvenue

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2013
    Messages:
    60
    Location:
    Nashua NH
    This is the NHTSA's Mission statement:
    "Save lives, prevent injuries and reduce economic costs due to road traffic crashes, through education, research, safety standards and enforcement activity."

    Tesla will probably exceed all with the exception of economic costs. I assume each of time there is a fire the car is totaled. But!!!! now that Elon has said fires are covered under warranty, it will not be a financial problem for anyone other than Tesla.
     
  10. Chris TX

    Chris TX Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2013
    Messages:
    1,482
    Location:
    Dallas, TX
    You hit the nail on the head, my friend. NHTSA's focus is on those areas. The vehicle's occupants were never at risk. In fact, in the last fire, the driver technically could have sat in his seat while the fire was still being put out. Now, the drunk Mexican guy is another story.
    One of the Austin Gallery employees and I were talking the other day that Tesla should deny the Mexican guy to purchase another Model S. He's already proven he can't control his liquor or his car, why would Tesla give him another chance to do the same or worse???
     
  11. artsci

    artsci Sponsor

    Joined:
    May 10, 2012
    Messages:
    4,673
    Location:
    Timonium, Maryland
    Ditto. At least 75 incidents would be required for statistical significance and even that would be marginal. 2 or 3 cases does not even approach statistical significance.
     
  12. ecarfan

    ecarfan Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2013
    Messages:
    10,321
    Location:
    San Mateo, CA
    Typical TV "news" report: cursory, simplistic, and largely uninformative. Reminded me of why I haven't watched TV news for years now.
     
  13. Zapped

    Zapped Model S - PURE EV

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2012
    Messages:
    964
    Location:
    YEG <-> PSP
    Some News is better than No News.
    - Sure creates a public awareness of TESLA.
    - I had no idea there were that many ICE fires annually.
    - I'm sure people can decide what's hype and what's not.

    BOTTOM LINE : I FEEL TOTAL SAFE IN MY MODEL S
     
  14. BillHamp

    BillHamp Banned

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2013
    Messages:
    83
    Location:
    N/A
    Sure you can, depending on the setting. As you'll note, I said it was bordering on statistical significance. The NHTSA is investigating for that very reason and I would imagine they know a great deal more about car accidents and vulnerabilities than any of us.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Do you have some calculations to go along with that? If so, I'd love to see them.

    - - - Updated - - -

    I was referring to the specific case of Tesla. The concern is not that Tesla cars catch on fire any day of the week for any reason. The concern is that they catch fire in a specific situation (undercarriage strike). If the fires were occurring while the car sat in the driveway, then the NHTSA would have a different concern. My point was that the NHTSA is NOT saying the Tesla is unsafe or prone to fire, they are saying that it MAY have a very specific vulnerability that needs to be addressed. Again, the statement was not a general statement about the NHTSA, it was specific to this case with Tesla.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Don't you think it would be odd for a car manufacturer to deny someone a purchase? I mean, would you want the manufacturer to keep tabs on everything you do and only sell you governed cars because you are prone to speeding? I'm not necessarily disagreeing, but I am curious about how far you think such a idea should go.

    - - - Updated - - -

    I wanted to clarify my point about statistical signifcance, so here goes.

    ICE vehicles have a rate of fire per accident that is something like 2.9/1,000. Most of those, I would assume, are not from undercarriage strikes, but other types of accident. So we can look at the fire rate in the MS in a few ways.

    1. The MS is less prone to fire as a result of accident than most ICE vehicles. This general statement relies on the assumption that the MS is being wrecked at about the same rate as ICE vehicles. It also relies on the assumption above, which is that most ICE fires are not due to undercarriage strikes. This general statement may or may not be true, but it isn't specifically what we are interested in given the nature of the fires in the three MS accidents.

    2. The MS is more prone to fire as a result undercarriage stike than an ICE vehicle. This is what the NHTSA is interested in. This one is harder to assess because we don't know the rate of undercarriage strike and fire in ICE vehicles. That stat may not even exist. However, the NHTSA wants to find out more and so does Tesla.

    Number 2 may very well be statistically significant if there is a low rate of fire/strike in ICE cars and a high rate in Tesla. Even with only 3 samples, we may be able to say there is statistical significance. Now, I agree that 3 is a low number and thus error in the calculation will be high. That does not mean, however, that we still cannot reach the 95% confidence interval most often used to determine significance. If I had more time, I'd try to work the calculation out. Maybe this weekened. It would certainly be a tentative calculation and one that, if being published in a journal, would require more support. However, there are ways to determine if there is a problem and that is where the NHTSA comes in.

    At any rate, the point is not that the MS has a huge problem, but that it has a specific problem unique to its design, battery location, battery capacity, etc. It is a kind of perfect storm. Fortunately, this storm, if real, can be corrected. The NHTSA will investigate and if they find something, then they will have done Tesla a huge favor. They will have saved the company money and time investigating the problem themselves, money and time they can then invest in a fix. So, the bottom line is that statistical significance may be reached in a very limited case, which is all we are really concerned about anyway.
     
  15. ToddRLockwood

    ToddRLockwood Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2012
    Messages:
    1,263
    Location:
    Burlington, Vermont
    Another way to look at this is that, no matter what changes are made, the probability of a battery fire will never reach absolute zero. Lithium cells, like gasoline, are volatile. The point of mitigation is to reduce the odds to an acceptable level, and Tesla already achieved that when they designed the battery pack's internal safety systems. Let us not forget that during federal crash testing there was not so much as a puff of smoke out of the battery. Likewise, in numerous documented accidents involving the Model S, including some pretty serious head-on crashes, the battery was not involved. And most importantly, there have been no serious injuries thus far in any of these battery fire events—likely due to the fact that battery fires take a few minutes to get going. This fact makes it all the more ridiculous to make a statistical comparison to explosive gas car fires.
     
  16. BillHamp

    BillHamp Banned

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2013
    Messages:
    83
    Location:
    N/A
    It is true that probability of fire will never reach zero. The fact that there was no fire during federal crash testing futher supports the reasoning that the Tesla is not generally prone to fire, but may have a single, unique vulnerability to undercarriage strikes. Basically, you have reiterated everything I said, with the exception of one thing. You said "And most importantly, there have been no serious injuries thus far in any of these battery fire events—likely due to the fact that battery fires take a few minutes to get going. This fact makes it all the more ridiculous to make a statistical comparison to explosive gas car fires." This is not the point. The point is not injury from fire, which is a different measure altogether. The point is fire risk after undercarriage strike. Make a statistical comparison to the same problem in ICE cars is not ridiculous. In fact, it makes perfect sense if you want to: A. Understand if there is a problem, and B. Figure out what the problem might be.
     
  17. roblab

    roblab Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2008
    Messages:
    2,022
    Location:
    Angwin (Napa Valley) CA
    It bothers me that the NHTSA will send out a man or men or team who know next to nothing about the MS. Tesla will have to send out a team to teach them. NHTSA already destroyed several cars in crash testing and never got a fire to start, so they'll probably have to get one to start in another one. Or try to, maybe in several. 600 engineers (so I've heard) worked on Tesla's design and did the best job ever seen anywhere in developing a new car from ground zero, and supposedly these people from NHTSA are smarter, or know something? I don't have a lot of faith in government organizations, I guess. How can this "team" make any better judgement or have any better ideas than Tesla engineers who developed the whole program?
     
  18. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2010
    Messages:
    15,848
    Location:
    Ottawa, Canada
    Don't diss people just because they work for the government. I'm sure the NHSTA engineers are competent and have years of experience.

    There's something to be said for having outside people look at your product. Your own engineers can sometimes be too invested sometimes to find problems.
     
  19. Zythryn

    Zythryn MS 70D, MX 90D

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2009
    Messages:
    1,660
    Location:
    Minnesota
    Could I request a Mod add the date of the interview, which was Nov 19th, to avoid confusion.
    My apologies for not doing this originally:redface:
     
  20. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2010
    Messages:
    15,848
    Location:
    Ottawa, Canada
    As you wish!
     

Share This Page