Tesla was traveling at high speed before fatal Florida crash -NTSB

·2 min read
FILE PHOTO: A Tesla logo hang on a building outside of a Tesla dealership in New York

By David Shepardson

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) said a Tesla Model 3 involved in a fatal Sept. 13 crash in Coral Gables was traveling at a high rate of speed before it crashed into two trees and caught fire, according to a preliminary https://www.ntsb.gov/investigations/Pages/HWY21FH011.aspxreport.

The crash occurred on a residential street with a 30-mile per hour speed limit and resulted in the deaths of the 20-year-old driver and a 19-year-old passenger.

The NTSB said it recovered about 5 seconds of pre-crash and crash data from the vehicle's event data recorder (EDR). Preliminary evaluation of the data indicated "the maximum recorded vehicle speed was 90 mph."

NTSB repaired and installed the damaged data chip from the EDR and installed into an another recorder so the data could be retrieved. NTSB said "preliminary evaluation of the data indicated that application of the accelerator pedal ranged from 0 to 100%, the service brake remained off."

The 2021 Tesla at 8:55 p.m. was traveling north on Alhambra Circle as it approached the signal-light-controlled intersection with Coral Way and "passed another car and accelerated as it neared the yellow signal light at the intersection," the NTSB said.

The Tesla continued north through the intersection, traveled about 140 feet and the left front of the car struck a tree, rotated 90 degrees counterclockwise and then collided with a second tree, NTSB said.

A postcrash fire badly destroyed the vehicle. "Firefighters faced challenges in extinguishing the fire and reported that the vehicle’s batteries reignited at least once," the NTSB said.

The fire destroyed much of the vehicle’s interior.

Tesla vehicles have large battery packs that sometimes have been involved in lengthy fires after crashes and NTSB has investigated numerous fires of Tesla vehicles after crashes.

(Reporting by David Shepardson; Editing by David Gregorio)

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