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article imageTesla explains cause of Model S fire, share prices fall

By Michael Thomas     Oct 4, 2013 in Technology
On Tuesday, a Tesla Model S sedan caught fire, the first recorded instance of it happening to the new electric cars. Tesla explained recently that the fire started when a piece of debris struck the hood and ignited a battery pack.
Despite the fire, the New York Times reports that the battery pack did its job in containing the fire to just the hood of the car. The battery pack contains 16 modules, each of which is isolated by fire barriers.
The driver of the vehicle reportedly told police that when he hit the debris, he exited the car. Once he was out, the fire broke out.
Autoblog reports that the flames were difficult to extinguish, however. The Kent Fire Department Regional Fire Authority found that using water only made the fire bigger, so they used a dry chemical. That turned out to not be enough either, though it did bring the flames down, so the firefights had to puncture the battery pack to apply water directly to the burning material.
Jalopnik points out the irony in the situation, in that Tesla's Model S was shown to be the safest car ever produced.
Tesla's stock price has since taken several hits. Shares fell 6.2 percent Thursday, dropping $12.05 to $180.95. The stock price fell further in after-hours trading to $178.55.
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