Automotive Tesla

Published on February 1st, 2023 | by Sounder Rajen


Fire Department Struggles To Extinguish Tesla Fire

The Tesla needed 22,700 litres of water to be put out

So recently the Sacramento Fire department had to put out an unexpected fire that started from a Tesla Model S. Luckily, nobody was injured by the fire however, the firefighters did note that it took 6,000 gallons (roughly 22,712 litres) of water to extinguish the flame which kept reigniting.

Tesla Model S

Naturally, one would now ask, why did the flame keep reigniting? Is this a problem with Tesla batteries? Are Tesla cars even that safe? If it took the fire department this much water, would I be able to put out the fire if my Tesla vehicle spontaneously combusted at home?

So why did this Tesla catch fire? Some may argue that petrol is much more volatile and prone to combustion and you’d be right, except certain properties in the lithium ion batteries in EVs is what makes them more prone to combustion. This is also probably why the flame kept reigniting after being put out.


Moreover, I personally am wondering if our very own Bomba would be able to do anything should a Tesla suddenly catch fire here in Malaysia. With the congested roads and endless traffic, especially in cities like KL, would the Bomba be equipped to quickly put out the fire from an electric vehicle (EV)?

While we do know that Honda has already conducted training with the Bomba on how to handle hybrid vehicles, Tesla cars are a whole different ball game. Plus, the flame kept reigniting apparently so will the Bomba have enough water to put out the flames? I am doubtful.

BYD Atto 3

This is not to say that all EVs are prone to sudden fires as there are many EVs and EV brands out there which do not regularly make the news for all the wrong reasons. It is no secret that Tesla has had a bunch of problems with reliability and this is just the latest in a long string of problems.

On top of that, brands like BYD which have manufactured its blade battery have proven that their batteries are nowhere near as dangerous or unreliable as Tesla batteries. Does this mean the BYD batteries are 100 percent safe? Of course not, nothing is 100 percent safe but blade batteries have never caught fire yet.

So yes, brands like BYD and their blade batteries are relatively much safer than Tesla batteries so if you are in the market for an EV, please do your research on the brand and their products extensively so that you do not have to deal with the headache that comes with brands like Tesla.

BYD blade battery
BYD blade battery

Well, either way there will always be a risk of sudden flames when it comes to EVs, the only thing manufacturers can do is build higher quality batteries like BYD to ensure things like this have a much smaller chance of happening. Hopefully Tesla follows BYD’s lead on this.

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