'Brothers' killed by exploding battery in Tesla smash

NBC Miami

NBC Miami

After Tesla and the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) had a fallout over the board's investigation into a deadly crash involving a Tesla vehicle on Autopilot, the NTSB is launching yet another investigation into an accident involving a Tesla vehicle. That vehicle was in Autopilot mode when it hit a concrete barrier. The third teenager was thrown out of the vehicle and was rushed to a nearby hospital where his condition is unknown.

The National Transportation Safety Board announced Wednesday it is sending a team of four to investigate Tuesday's fatal, electric vehicle crash on State Route A1A, Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Lithium-ion batteries like those used by Tesla can catch fire and burn rapidly in a crash, although Tesla has maintained its vehicles catch fire far less often than those powered by gasoline.

The local police in Fort Lauderdale, Florida - where the crash occurred - said they believed speed was a factor behind the crash.

Tesla said late Wednesday it had not retrieved electronic logs from the vehicle, but the high rate of speed indicated the autopilot feature was not engaged.

The NTSB is investigating three other traffic incidents involving Tesla vehicles.

A probe is under way into a fire in a Tesla Model X SUV that crashed on a freeway near Mountain View, California, on March 23.

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The deadly crash is the second in six weeks involving a Tesla that's led to a NTSB investigation.

"The goal of these investigations is to understand the impact of these emerging transportation technologies when they are part of a transportation accident", he said.

This NTSB investigation primarily focus on emergency response in relation to the electric vehicle battery fire, including fire department activities and towing operations. As a result of its investigation the NTSB issued several new safety recommendations.

A Tesla spokesperson told Newsweek: "Our thoughts are with the families and friends affected by this tragedy". They were traveling southbound on Seabreeze Boulevard when the auto drove off the road and crashed into a concrete wall, Detective Tracy Figone of the Fort Lauderdale Police Department said in a statement.

Earlier this month, Tesla and the NTSB got into an open feud over Tesla's release of information from the probe into the Mountain View crash.

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