Guest essay by Eric Worrall
A horror Tesla crash in Houston involving an auto-pilot Tesla car has claimed two lives. According to firefighters, the high energy batteries kept re-igniting – firefighters attempted to douse the battery fire for four hours, pouring 30,000 gallons of water onto the fire, before giving up and letting the fire burn itself out.
2 dead after fiery crash involving self-driving Tesla, authorities said
Monday, April 19, 2021 7:00AM
SPRING, Texas (KTRK) — Two people died in a fiery crash involving a 2019 Tesla Model S and its autopilot functionality while taking it for a test drive on Saturday night, according to authorities.
The flames reportedly took hours to extinguish, and Harris County Precinct 4 Constable Mark Herman said the investigation has led them to believe that there was no one driving the car when the crash occurred.
The crash happened just after 9 p.m. on Hammock Dunes Place in the Carlton Woods Creekside subdivision. The victims were said to have been a 59 and 69-year-old man, however police have not released their names yet.
The batteries on board the Tesla continued to ignite despite efforts to douse the flames, authorities said. It reportedly took around four hours and more than 30,000 gallons of water before firefighters decided to let the fire burn itself out.
…Read more: https://abc13.com/2-killed-in-fiery-tesla-crash-that-took-4-hours-to-extinguish/10525148/
It is unclear at this stage what caused the crash, though investigators have stated they believe no one was driving when the crash occurred. It is also not clear what the cause of death was.
Given the duration and intensity of the blaze, I’m guessing the only detailed data available might be whatever the autopilot uploaded to the Tesla mothership before it was consumed by the fire.
The lithium in Tesla batteries creates a fire which is far more dangerous than a gasoline fire, and almost impossible to extinguish. Think twice before you park a Tesla in your home garage – if the battery ignites, and firefighters cannot extinguish the blaze, you could lose the house.
Even if your house structure survives the fire, acute exposure to the smoke and lithium contamination of the house and surrounds could be an issue – lithium poisoning can cause long term dementia like neurological problems (pyramidal cell dysfunction), along with problems with speech and muscle weakness.
Lets just say if I see a big Lithium fire, I’m not planning to hang around and breath in the smoke.