Tesla vehicle catches fire after hitting tow truck in Moscow

Andrew Cummings
August 13, 2019

A Tesla electric vehicle caught fire and exploded after crashing into a stationary tow truck on the Moscow ring road over the weekend, after the driver said he failed to see the truck parked ahead of him.

The car's driver, businessman Alexey Tretyakov, 41, and his two children escaped the auto before it was engulfed, but were rushed to hospital.

Reuters further reported that Tretyakov, the driver who works as a financial market expert, suffered a broken leg while his children were only bruised as a result of the crash. In its quarterly safety reports, Tesla claims that it is safer to drive on Autopilot but that diligence needs to be practiced by the driver. The vehicle has now been confirmed to have been on Autopilot.

Allegedly, the vehicle was cruising in the left lane with the Autopilot turned on.

However, Tesla have said drivers should keep their hands on the wheel in case of emergencies.

Two of the first reported deadly accidents involving the Autopilot feature occurred in 2016.

In January, a 23-year-old died when the Model S they were driving collided with a truck while traveling on a highway in China.

It was not immediately clear what type of Tesla the driver was operating.

A Tesla auto rammed into a tow truck in Moscow, Russian broadcaster Zvezda reported on Sunday, publishing footage of the incident.

The company says it provides owners with "clear guidance on how to properly use Autopilot, as well as in-car instructions before they use the system and while the feature is in use".

In its latest safety report, Tesla claimed that there was a Tesla vehicle fire for every 170 million miles travelled between 2012 and 2018 compared to a vehicle fire for every 19 million miles travelled in the US.

Police said: "The Tesla was probably driving on Autopilot and couldn't recognize the tow truck in front of it, after which it caught fire".

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