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Tesla Supercharger station partly destroyed by car engine fire after drunk driving crash

A Tesla Supercharger station in Seaside, Oregon, was partly destroyed by a gas-powered car engine fire after a drunk driving crash.

Tesla’s charging station, which is located in the Seaside Factory Outlet Center’s parking lot, was offline today after the incident.

The city of Seaside described the incident in a press release:

On Sunday December 8, 2019, at approximately 11:50 p.m., the Seaside Police Department responded to a reckless driving complaint at the Seaside Outlet Mall, 1111 N. Roosevelt. A motor vehicle had been reported to be “burning cookies” in the parking lot. Due to the type of driving by the operator Ricky Criss, 33, the vehicle’s engine caught fire near the Tesla charging station within the mall parking lot. In addition to Criss’ vehicle, damage to the charging station was also sustained.

The car caught on fire and destroyed at least one of Tesla’s 8 Supercharger stalls at the station.

The police department released a few pictures of the Supercharger station on fire:

A Tesla owner in Oregon told Electrek that the entire station was closed following the incident, and Tesla’s staff was on site to try to work with the electric utility to bring the station back online after disabling the damaged stalls.

The city added:

Upon officer arrival, the vehicle was fully involved with flames showing and Criss remained within the vehicle, refusing to get out as he wanted to remove personal belongings. The responding officer had to remove Criss from the vehicle and detain him to prevent him from returning to the vehicle and to keep him from injuring himself due to the vehicle fire. Seaside Fire and Rescue responded to the scene a short time later and was able to put out the fire and prevent additional damage from occurring in the immediate area.

Criss was arrested for reckless driving, and he tested with a blood alcohol content of 0.18%.

Electrek’s Take

Tesla is often under media pressure and regulatory scrutiny over fires involving its vehicles, despite the lack of evidence that they catch on fire at a higher rate than gasoline-powered vehicles.

It’s ironic that Tesla is involved with another fire, but this time it was clearly started by a gasoline-powered vehicle.

Unfortunately, it also took down a Tesla Supercharger station, but hopefully, Tesla can bring it back online quickly and replace the destroyed stalls.

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