A Tesla recently burst into flames during a crash tests, but there was more than meets the eye to the demonstration.
Car safety is always a concern. This is especially true in the United States considering it has more traffic-related deaths than any other developed country in the world. Manufacturers and insurance firms alike frequently perform crash tests with vehicles to determine how well they hold up in different accident scenarios. With electric cars gaining popularity, a particular focus has been put on the risks their batteries pose in crash situations. A recent crash test done by Axa, a global insurance group, depicted a Tesla sedan exploding into flames following an orchestrated crash. The crowd thought it was the battery that caused the fire. Axa intended for the crowd to think that but later admitted that the entire stunt was staged.
Axa, the insurance firm that purposely caused a Tesla to burst into flames at a recent demonstration, is apologizing for spreading false information and perpetuating confusion. The company admitted in a statement that the Tesla did not catch fire following the crash as a result of its battery. The battery was actually removed prior to the demonstration. Axa used pyrotechnics to ignite the fire. You can watch the video of the Tesla catching fire below or by clicking here.
Axa said that they removed the battery in order to have complete control over the situation. They didn’t want anyone in the crowd getting hurt. The company said they wanted to use the Tesla to demonstrate a potential outcome of a severe crash with an electric vehicle.
However, Axa did note that the significant amount of data it has compiled related to electric vehicle crash statistics point to the fact that they catch fire at rates similar to that of cars with internal combustion engines. Some experts have even found evidence that suggests that electric cars are less prone to catching fire than those powered by gasoline. Although, there also has been evidence that suggests that when electric cars do catch fire, those fires are much more difficult to put out compared to gas-triggered blazes.
Moreover, the company also admitted that had they not ignited the fire themselves that the Tesla most likely wouldn’t have caught fire even if the battery wasn’t removed. “In addition, the Crash Test with a Tesla vehicle did not cause the type of damage to the undercarriage that would be likely to spark a battery fire as the images would appear to suggest,” admitted Axa in a statement.
Lastly, as part of Axa’s clarification regarding the Tesla demonstration, they highlighted their support of the electric vehicle industry. “We firmly believe that e-vehicles will play a key role in the automotive future. This is why we see it as important to take an in-depth look at electromobility and its safety,” emphasized the company.
Overall, it’s certainly nice to see that Axa is taking responsibility for its role in spreading misinformation about Tesla and electric vehicles in general. As the world continues to transition to cleaner sources of energy it is paramount that those with the power to do so commit to only putting out accurate information to the public. Misinformation and disinformation are powerful and potentially harmful tools when put into the hands of malicious minds. Empowering the public with truthful information backed by measurable data is the only way to combat those will ill intentions and ulterior agendas.