Unsafe At Any Speed? Electric Cars Keep Catching Fire

In Vancouver, Canada, in late May, a Tesla Model Y burst into flames while the driver was waiting for a light at an intersection. He had to kick out a window to escape.

Around the same time, a new Tesla burst into flames in Brooklyn, Illinois, and a week before that a Model 3 caught fire in California City, California, while it was parked in a driveway.

In April, a deadly lithium-ion battery fire occurred in a Tesla car crash in Houston.

Last year, a Tesla caught fire while charging overnight in a garage, which the Washington Post described as “one in a string of recent examples showing what can happen when electric cars are left parked in garages to charge overnight” and which promoted electric vehicle (EV) makers to warn “owners not to leave the cars charging unattended in certain circumstances, or sitting fully charged in garages.”

Tesla recently ordered a recall of almost 130,000 cars because of an “infotainment” system issue that threatened to overheat during “fast charging.”

We’re not trying to single Tesla out here. It isn’t the only one having problems with its lithium-ion batteries.

A March 31 house fire in Damascus, Maryland, caused by a charging Chevy Volt resulted in $350,000 worth of damages.

Last August, GM recalled all the 110,000 Chevrolet Bolt cars it had sold “due to the risk of the high-voltage battery pack catching fire” and warned owners to park their cars away from buildings and other cars. As of April, GM had replaced the batteries on only about a quarter of the recalled cars.

Chevrolet recalled about 110,000 of its Volt EV model years 2017 to 2022 for potential battery fire issues.

In France last month, two electric buses spontaneously exploded, resulting in all 149 electric buses being pulled from service.

Electric scooters in India have been catching fire, and let’s not forget about the Samsung Galaxy 7 phone that had to be recalled after its lithium-ion battery started catching fire.

Shippers are increasingly wary, too. Japan’s Mitsui OSK Lines is the latest to say it won’t transport used EVs on its cargo vessels.

But don’t worry, we’re told. Electric vehicles result in far fewer fires than their gas-powered cousins.

From 2012 to 2021, Tesla reports that there was roughly one Tesla vehicle fire for every 210 million miles driven, which compares to one fire per 19 million miles driven for all vehicles.

“The difference between Tesla and the average is 11:1, which is a big win not only for Tesla but in general, for electric cars,” writes Mark Kane in InsideEVs.

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Comments (15)

If you keep increasing the Energy-density of those Batteries,at some point something will give!
Global electric car sales doubled in 2021. Vroom! cheering
yeah,from a hundred to twohundred!rolling on the floor laughing
well,I guess that proves the Efficacy of EVs!rolling on the floor laughing
Bet ya Byden says they're all safe and effective......where have we heard that before???
Just wait till those cars start zapping people . Caterpillar make (or made) a 30 ton diesel electric dozer and already its zapped an operator , whats more dozer's being built of steel can ground themselves electrically where a car is on rubber tires which act as insulators till earthed by somebody touching them . Its mostly the trendy lefties who drive them so no loss , should be encouraged even .
Do you have a link backing up that statement?
The day you have spent years helping people solve heavy machinery issues like I have I might , in the meantime you can take it or leave it .
Okay, a simple "no" would have sufficed.
be some real fun getting zapped from 200 to 800 Volts or so!laugh
not even close.

"Worldwide EV sales doubled year over year in 2021 to 6.6 million."
astounding,stupendous,hope Mayor Pete owns one along with his Bicycle!laugh
Now,run off and have a look at the environmental damage those allegedly CLEAN Vehicles are causing!

Quit pretty when they go up aren't they .
ABB is so smart now they put extra Batteries on top of their E-Buses!laugh
It would not be possible to evacuate the bus , too fast . There is a comment from one of our firemen on facebook where I got the clip , they don't want anybody trapped in an electric car post crash as they have not been trained on how to de-electrify them . Was a time when airbags were the new hazard for vehicle extraction .
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Lawton, Oklahoma, USA

Retired old guy. Loves sports, music, and karaoke. Not shy about singing.Love to travel. Love to go to beaches and warm weather outdoor events. U.S. Air Force Veteran. I am here for the blogs. I am an amputee. My lower leg is gone.

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