Modern electric cars are quite safe even though the batteries remain a fire hazard if they’re ever damaged to the point that they catch fire. It’s unclear precisely what happened in this particular case but a video has emerged from China which shows a Tesla Model S catching fire. The vehicle wasn’t moving and it wasn’t hit by any other vehicle. It caught fire while it was parked in an underground lot.
The CCTV footage from a Shanghai parking garage shows that the Model S basically explodes into flames for no apparent reason. It didn’t take long for the video to spread like fire, no pun intended, on social media. We can see wisps of smoke emerge from underneath the car in the moments leading up to it actually catching fire.
Tesla addressed the matter on Chinese social network Weibo, confirming that the fire did happen and that it’s sending a team to Shanghai in order to participate in the investigation. “After learning about the accident that occurred in Shanghai, we sent the team to the scene last night,” Tesla said, adding that “We are actively contacting relevant departments and supporting the verification. According to current information, there are no casualties.”
That’s fortunate because given that the car took mere seconds to catch fire, it would have been difficult for anyone inside the car to save themselves in that short amount of time.