Tesla explodes in flames on side of freeway near Sacramento

Photo of Jordan Parker

Jan 28, 2023Updated: Jan 28, 2023 8:42 pm

Tesla Model S sedans sit on display outside a showroom in Littleton, Colo. A Model S caught fire by the side of a Sacramento-area freeway, officials said.

David Zalubowski, STF/Associated Press

A Tesla suddenly exploded in flames on the side of a freeway outside Sacramento on Saturday afternoon, with first responders able to extinguish the fire, Sacramento Metro Fire said.

The driver of the Tesla Model S pulled over on the side of eastbound US 50 near Rancho Cordova after smoke began billowing out of the front of the car. Officials said there was no damage to the vehicle before the fire.

Fire engines arrived on the scene around 3:41 pm and used jacks to access the car’s battery and put out the flames. “Thousands” of gallons of water had to be used before the fire was fully extinguished, a spokesperson for Sacramento Metro Fire said.

No one was injured, fire officials said.

Crews arrived to our first Tesla fire. It was involved in an accident 3 weeks ago, and was parked in a wrecking yard. Crews knocked the fire down but it kept reigniting/off-gassing in the battery compartment. Crews created a pit, placed the car inside, and filled the pit with water pic.twitter.com/Lz5b5770lO

— Metro Fire of Sacramento (@metrofirepio) June 12, 2022

This isn’t the first time the department worked to put out a Tesla fire. Last June, crews responded to a Tesla parked in a wrecking yard that spontaneously caught fire three weeks after being involved in an accident, the spokesperson said. Firefighters had to place the entire car in a pit and fill it with water before the fire was snuffed out.

Jordan Parker (he/him) is a San Francisco Chronicle staff writer. Email: [email protected] Twitter: @jparkerwrites

Jordan Parker is a breaking news reporter at The San Francisco Chronicle. Before joining the newsroom, he spent six semesters on his award-winning college newspaper, the State Hornet, where he won two Associated Collegiate Press awards and led the organization to an Innovation Pacemaker award as editor in chief. Parker is a proud Sacramento State University alum, where he recently earned his bachelors degree in journalism in May 2022. He is originally from Pittsburg, California.

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