Investigators from Tesla Inc. are en route to China to investigate the cause of a puzzling explosion that destroyed one of its electric vehicles (EVs) parked in Shanghai. The Tesla model involved is a Model S in an underground car park.
Video of the incident taken by a security camera at the parking space shows the white-colored Model S beginning to emit smokes and then suddenly bursting into flames and burning fiercely. Posted on Sunday evening, the 22 second-long video had more than 18 million views by Monday morning.
The video tweet was first uploaded (on Weibo) by a user called Xiu Jian Cong Ye De Liu Dai from Shandong Province. It was later posted on Twitter by a user named @ShanghaiJayIn. It's unclear if these two posters are one and the same person.
The user tweeted "Good or bad, negative or positive I will post anything about Tesla or EVs in China. This happened today in Shanghai, China 1st generation Tesla Model S caught Fire _ underground car park.#Tesla #TeslaChina #ModelS #Fire #China #Shanghai #特斯拉 #中国 $TSLA."
"We immediately sent a team on site and we're supporting local authorities to establish the facts. From what we know now, no one was harmed," said a Tesla China spokesperson in an email statement.
If confirmed, this incident won't be the first of its kind where a parked and idled Tesla EV self-destructed on its own accord. No one was hurt in the blast said Tesla in a post on Weibo, China's equivalent of Twitter.
On Monday, Tesla said it immediately sent a team to investigate the incident, which occurred in Shanghai on Sunday evening local time. It said it's in active communication and cooperation with relevant departments about the incident.
Most of the cases (at least a dozen cases) worldwide over the past five years wherein the batteries of a Model X exploded were caused by collisions, said Chicago law firm Corboy & Demetrio. The rest saw parked Tesla set on fire by their batteries.
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