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James Quinn is a senior director of strategic planning for a major university. James has held financial positions with a retailer, homebuilder and university in his almost 30-year career. Those positions included treasurer, controller, and head of strategic planning. He is married with three ... more

Another Tesla Auto-Immolation

Date: Saturday, October 26, 2019 10:08 PM EDT

Guest Post by Eric Peters

Pity the fool who buys a Tesla (TSLA). It could be the last car he ever owns.

Omar Awan, a 48-year-old anesthesiologist, was driving his leased Tesla in February when he lost control on a south Florida parkway and the car slammed into a palm tree, according to a wrongful death lawsuit filed in state court in Broward County.

Would-rescuers couldn’t open the doors to extract Awan because the handles were retracted; bystanders watched helplessly as the car filled with smoke and flames, according to the complaint – which alleges the fire originated with the car’s battery.

 

The door handles on the Model S are flush with the car and pop out — “auto-present” in the words of Tesla – when they detect that the key fob is nearby.

But when the power goes off, the doors can’t be opened.

“Fire engulfed the car and burned Dr. Awan beyond recognition – all because the Model S has inaccessible door handles, no other way to open the doors, and an unreasonably dangerous fire risk,” according to the Oct. 10 suit. The complaint lists the cause of death as smoke inhalation and states that Awan had sustained no internal injuries or broken bones in the crash.

Awan’s Tesla continued to burn for hours, reigniting several times even after firefighters had extinguished the flames and the car had been towed, according to the complaint.

But Teslians don’t care; the car can do no wrong – even when it kills.

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