On Christmas day in Alabama, a massive effort involving thousands of gallons of water and more than 10 rescue organizations was required to extinguish a fire that broke out in a Tesla vehicle.
In the Pine Level community, which is about an hour south of Birmingham, firefighters responded to a traffic accident at 11:14 p.m. on Monday night. They discovered a fully engulfed Tesla Model Y on fire. The intensity of the fire was such that it necessitated the closure of the interstate, as reported by the Pine Level Fire Department.
The department quickly reached out for help from various fire departments including Marbury, Booth, Independence, White City, Old Kingston, and Verbena Fire Departments. They also requested assistance from Haynes Ambulance, ALEA, Autauga Co EMA, ALDOT, and Autauga Co Sheriff’s Office. This information was shared on their Facebook page.
The department mentioned that they used two fire hoses to completely extinguish the fire, utilizing a total of 36,000 gallons of water. In comparison, The Independent reported that a standard fire in a non-electric vehicle can be extinguished with less than 500 gallons of water.
The Autauga County department stated that they had encountered a unique situation – it was the first time they had to deal with an electric vehicle fire. They acknowledged that such incidents are uncommon and pose particular challenges and risks for firefighters.
The increasing popularity of electric vehicles has presented fire departments with unique challenges when it comes to extinguishing fires. One of the main reasons for this is the presence of lithium-ion batteries, which power these vehicles and contain various flammable components, including liquid electrolyte.
According to KSL 102.7, the batteries from these vehicles have the potential to reignite later and burn at temperatures ranging between 2,000 and 4,000 degrees.
According to a CNBC report, Tesla has recently disclosed its plans to transition its vehicles from lithium-ion batteries to iron phosphate batteries. This switch is considered a safer alternative for their vehicles.
The department expressed its gratitude to all the agencies that dedicated their time on Christmas Day to support and protect their communities. These agencies, staffed by professional volunteers, selflessly left their families to fulfill their duty.
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