SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS RADIO) – Officials in Sacramento shared that a Tesla traveling at “freeway speeds” had its battery compartment “spontaneously” catch fire on the highway on Saturday.
The Sacramento Metro Fire District shared photos of the Tesla Model S that caught fire on Twitter. One photo shows the car lifted onto two wheels so firefighters could reach the battery compartment to put the fire out.
The department shared that no one was injured in the fire.
In another tweet with a video of the fire attached, the district shared that an estimated 6,000 gallons of water was used to extinguish the flames. Firefighters said this was because the cells of the Tesla battery continued to combust and catch fire.
This is not the first time a Tesla battery has put up a fight against firefighters. In August, Sacramento Metro Fire Captain Parker Wilbourn spoke about Tesla fires with KTXL, saying they are not like traditional car fires.
“When one battery catches fire, it preheats the next battery, the next battery, and the next battery. It causes a fire, and it is a chain reaction from there,” Wilbourn explained.
Tesla’s Model S has been criticized as of late, partly for the Full Self-Driving mode feature that has sparked investigations from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
The NHTSA is investigating an accident that left 16 people injured on a California roadway on Thanksgiving. The driver of the vehicle has blamed the self-driving feature for the wreck, saying that the car moved into the fast lane on the Bay Bridge in San Francisco before it stopped suddenly, causing the eight-car pileup.
Federal officials have not made clear if they plan on investigating Saturday’s Tesla fire. The fire department has also not released a cause for the fire at this time.