The US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has contacted Tesla for more information on a Model Y fire that broke out in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.
The agency told Reuters it was “aware of the incident and has reached out to manufacturers for information.”
We reported the incident on Wednesday, May 25th, which was filmed by a business near the fire and posted on YouTube. In the video, the driver, identified as Jamil Jutha, reports that his model Y started smoking and then died, making it harder for him to get out.
Read more: Tesla driver claims he had to get out of a Model Y that exploded in Canada
“I literally just pulled up to the stop, left my mark, and then suddenly said ‘Error! Error! ‘ And then all of a sudden I see myself smoking and I’m like oh my god, what a f # @ k! ” Jutha says in the video. “I couldn’t even open it, everything was electric, so everything was closed. The door couldn’t open, I couldn’t get out the window, so I just said, ‘OK, I’m going to kick it.’
Fortunately, the driver was able to escape from the car, apparently without any injuries. He claims to have owned the car for only six months at the time of the fire.
As we mentioned on Wednesday, under normal circumstances, Tesla doors are opened using a button near the top of the handle. This opens the door and lowers the frameless window slightly to prevent glass damage. If the electrical system dies, however, the button does not work.
Since people usually approach the door in this way, when there is an emergency, they sometimes feel stuck in the car, just as the jutha did. However, the car has a separate latch that can open the door to see if the electrical system is working. Although the distinctive nature of buttons and latches and the existence of latches are not intuitive enough for everyone to find, it can be a design flaw to distinguish them.