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NTSB Investigating Another Fatal Crash Involving a Tesla, But Won’t Focus on Autopilot

The investigation’s primary focus will be on “emergency response in relation to the electric vehicle battery fire, including fire department activities and towing operations,” the agency said.

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The National Transportation Safety Board said it is sending a team of four people to investigate a May 8 crash in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., that involved a Tesla Model S.

The 2014 all-electric Tesla was traveling at a high rate of speed when it struck a wall, which caused a post-crash fire, according to reports. Two vehicle occupants died and one was injured in the crash.

NTSB noted that it doesn’t anticipate Tesla’s Autopilot feature being a part of the investigation.

The investigation’s primary focus will be on “emergency response in relation to the electric vehicle battery fire, including fire department activities and towing operations,” the agency said.

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“NTSB has a long history of investigating emerging transportation technologies, such as lithium-ion battery fires in commercial aviation, as well as a fire involving the lithium-ion battery in a Chevrolet Volt in collaboration with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration,” NTSB Chairman Robert Sumwalt said.  “In addition, the NTSB is currently investigating a fire involving the transportation of hydrogen gas for fuel-cell vehicles. The goal of these investigations is to understand the impact of these emerging transportation technologies when they are part of a transportation accident.”

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