Tesla Car Caught Fire in Norway While Charged

Model S is a Tesla flagship product and so far it has performed quite well in the market. However, one incident in new year's day may have damaged its product image when one of its car was on fire while being charged.

The incident happened in Gjerstad, a city in Aust-Agder county in south eastern Norway. Chicago Tribune reported that according to Norwegian broadcaster NRK, the Tesla Model S was being charged when it caught fire. The car was burning down to a charred husk and nobody was injured.

The car was charged at a Tesla supercharging station when fire erupted. Due to difficulties to extinguish the fire with water, fire fighter had to use special foam to control the flames. John Kvitne, a local police spokesman told NRK that police investigators will analyze both the charred wreck and the charging station to try to find out what happened.

Supercharging station is a charging station service provided by Tesla for its automobile owners for battery swap and fast recharge. Tesla has provided around 2,000 supercharging station in the world, and the one in Gjerstad was one of the 76 charging station in Europe.

Tesla Model S is powered by lithium-ion battery that is prone to thermal runaway: overheating that lead to a fire accident. The incident in Norway is the last fire incident in Tesla Model S after fire broke out in November 2013. Tesla Model S  caught fire when charged in a garage in Irvine, California. Following the incident, Tesla made some changes to its charging system and adding thermal fuse to cut-off electric current when overheating was detected.

Apparently, the changes are not making the charging system safer. According to Mashable after the fire incident in California, Tesla agreed to add more safety protection for its batteries. Afterward, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) called off a safety investigation. However, this new incident showed Tesla have not provided adequate safety protection as it promised.

In regard to the fire in Norway, Tesla spokeperson told Mashable, "Nobody was harmed." The spokeperson also said, "We are undergoing a full investigation and will share our findings as soon as possible."

Extreme Tech reported that in response to the incident, Tesla told NRK that the company will do extensive research in an attempt to find out what caused the blaze. Tesla also affirmed that using its charging stations available worldwide is safe.

The supercharging station that cause fire is the only one along the road in Gjerstad. Tesla owner in Norway who travel in E18 Aust-Agder toll road will have to drive further to find the nearest charging station.

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