Security footage released from Shanghai in China shows a car looking similar to that of the Tesla Model S burning up into flames. The incident, as seen from the footage appears to have happened in some sort of basement parking space.
Even though there has not yet been an official confirmation that the car that went up in flames is a Tesla, social media review of the footage asserts that the car looks very much similar to a white Model S.
Tesla also has not yet confirmed anything on the situation but have acted pretty soon by dispatching a team of its experts to gather further information on the situation. Hopefully, within a couple of days, we will get to know trigger behind the occurrence of the fire.
The incident goes like this. Initially, thick white fumes could be seen as coming up from beneath the car via both its front and lateral sides. This is followed by the sudden appearance of violent flames which also blurs out the security camera for a while.
Apart from the Tesla that went up in flames, we could also see two other Audi models and a Volvo SUV parked in the vicinity. Judging by the look of the flames, it can be assumed that the Audi parked next to this car would have been damaged pretty bad.
Video Source – CNBC Television, YouTube
The time stamp on the footage reads 04-21-2019 20:15, meaning that the incident took place at 8 PM, local time.
Peter Valdes-Dapena, Senior Auto Writer, CNN Business was seen as commenting on the issue. He said that the incident was terribly illuminating. There is a lot that still needs to be known on the issue – whether the car was in some sort of accident prior to the incident, battery damage or whether it was altered in some kind of way.
He also added that Tesla fire accidents are not as sudden as how the current incident took place and that this a very unusual situation. Peter further expressed his curiosity on what really happened as well.
As Peter had pointed out, it is necessary that we know of the state of the car prior to the incident. There are chances that the car could have been involved in some sort of incident which affected the battery that may have led to the fire. Since the video does not give any clue into the prior state of the car, it is something to be deeply explored.
Possible repercussions of the incident
Even though a formal explanation from Tesla is still pending on the issue, the rapid spread of this incident via social media is causing some serious concerns among current and future Tesla owners.
Wall Street analysts are predicting that the fear created in the minds of the future, as well as the current Tesla owners, might affect the market for their cars and thereby the Stock Price.
Tesla’s share price has down significantly from the value it held on the 22nd of April. However, it cannot be confirmed that it was indeed because of this fire accident.
In June 2018, the Tesla driven by Michael Morris was seen to have been in a similar situation. His wife Mary McCormack tweeted that the fire took place in the absence of an accident and completely out of the blue as her husband was cruising in traffic through Santa Monica Blvd. She also added that it was a ‘Normal Tesla’ with no autopilot.
Yet another similar event took place in France. Per a report from BBC, a Model S which was being Test Driven in Biarritz and Bayonne went up in flames a few minutes after they started. No casualties were associated with this incident.
Interpreting the Model S Fire Incident
We think that is it too early to jump into conclusions based on just one video footage. A detailed technical explanation is to be considered before passing any judgment on Tesla’s cars.
As we had already mentioned, the released short video footage only shows the car going up in flames. There is no clarity on the past condition of the car, or on the status of the battery. There are very high chances that an altered battery may have been the reason for the fire.
The genuinely of the video is yet another factor to be considered. We are still unclear as to whether the fire was caused due to some human factors which were not covered in the footage.
An official statement from Tesla on the same issue is being awaited. That statement might provide more clarity on the issues that may have contributed to the fire.