As Tesla Model S vehicles now start to age beyond a few years, it seems that more and more of them are winding up somehow catching fire. The latest example comes from Belgium, where a Tesla Model S caught fire and completely burned down while plugged in at a Supercharger in Antwerp. Dutch media is reporting that the vehicle caught fire “a little while” after starting to charge, according to electrek:
“The driver of the car had parked it at a so-called ‘Supercharger’, a fast charging station, at the Novotel at Luithagen-Haven. When he returned a little later, his Tesla and the supercharger were lit up. Possibly there was a technical problem before charging.”
Firefighters were so concerned about the vehicle reigniting that they lifted the vehicle up with a crane and submerged it into a pool of water, which is usually the worst possible idea when dealing with a chemical fire:
“Moments later, the fire was extinguished by the fire department by immersing the car in a container with water. To ensure that the fire does not flare up again, the Tesla, or what remains of it, remained in the water for the rest of the night.”
Tesla did not immediately return a request for comment. Recall, in 2016 a Tesla Model S also caught fire while at a Supercharger station in Norway. Interestingly enough, in that case, firefighters were told “not to use water” to try and extinguish the battery fire.
And even the pro-Tesla blog at electrek can’t help but make an astute observation: “It seems like there have been many Tesla fires lately and they seem to all be Model S vehicles. We know of at least 4 in the past 2 months.”
As a result of the 2016 fire, Tesla wound up pushing a software update and blaming a “short circuit” in the the car. Tesla also recently has pushed a software update as a result of numerous vehicles appearing to spontaneously combust – one recently in China, and another in Hong Kong. We hope that this update is more effective than the one issued in 2016.
And that’s not the only piece of bad news for Tesla this weekend. Investigators have been probing a fatal crash in Florida that killed a pedestrian back in April after blowing through an intersection.
22-year-old Benavides Leon Naibel died after the impact of the crash threw her about 20 feet into the woods at the intersection. 27-year-old Angulo Dillion, who was with her, was in serious condition. A Monroe County Sheriff’s Office deputy was the first to find them.
Until this weekend, authorities were unsure as to whether or not the car’s Autopilot function had been engaged at the time of the accident, when the vehicle failed to stop at a 3 way stop sign intersection.
While investigators told the FL Keys News that the investigation into Autopilot was still ongoing, the article notes that driver George McGee had dropped his phone, looked down and subsequently ran the stop sign. The driver later told Monroe County Deputy Joel Torres that the car was on “cruise control” when he dropped the phone.