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Tesla says battery problem caused vehicle fire

Tesla said that the company formed a group of technology experts and senior executives from the US and China to investigate the cause of the fire.

US electric carmaker Tesla said on Friday that it has found the reason a parked Model S caught fire in Shanghai in April, after a preliminary investigation.

Based on investigation of the battery, software, manufacturing data and vehicle history data, Tesla said it has found no systematic flaws in the affected Model S vehicle and the incident is due to a problem in a single battery module inside the car, the company said in a statement published on its social media Weibo account.

In the evening of April 21, a Tesla Model S caught fire in an underground garage at a residential community on Wending Road in Xuhui District. A video on Weibo showed the vehicle parked in a garage starting to emit smoke. Shortly after, the vehicle exploded and burst into flames. No one has been injured in the incident. At least two cars were badly damaged nearby.

Tesla said that the company formed a group of technology experts and senior executives from the US and China to investigate the cause of the fire and cooperate with relevant government departments and property management department to carry out the following work.

The company said it will further improve battery safety and improve battery life through the updates of charging and thermal management systems in Model S and Model X vehicles.

Some electric vehicles  from Tesla, NIO and BYD have caught fire in the last three months which has drawn attention from the public.

On Thursday, Shanghai-based electric car company  NIO announced that it would recall 4,803 vehicles sold in the Chinese market to replace the battery packs after an ES8 vehicle caught fire in a residential area in Shanghai in May.

Earlier this month, China ordered carmakers to conduct checks on vehicles after electric cars caught fire. Xinhua news agency quoted the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology saying it had ordered companies to check for potential safety hazards with battery compartments, , waterproofing, high-voltage wiring harnesses, as well as onboard charging devices.

The ministry said that it will strengthen the safety management of new-energy vehicles, promote healthy and sustainable development of the new-energy vehicle industry and safeguard public safety and protect people and their property.

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