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Car-B-Q Part III: Tesla Flames Out Premarket On Reports Of Another Car Fire

Tyler Durden's picture


One momo company that will almost certainly miss out on all of today's Twitter/ECB induced BTFATH-euphoria, is Tesla which is down 3% premarket at last check for one simple reason: the one shown on the photo below. This is the third reported car fire in the past month. So much for that "best safety rating of any car ever tested" - perhaps it really is time to inquire just what the NHTSA kickbacks were in order to go with that "objective" determination?

Source: Teslamotorsclub


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Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:21 | 4130324 Running On Bing...
Running On Bingo Fuel's picture

Buy the dip I will.

Thanks for the heads up. Go Greenies!

I'll pick that one up at


Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:25 | 4130344 GetZeeGold
GetZeeGold's picture



The NSA Tesla version sets itself on fire if you exceed the speed limit and holds you until the cops can get there.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:31 | 4130367 Running On Bing...
Running On Bingo Fuel's picture

I'll take it. I'll cruise the airport circle looking for a TSA 'friendly' in the crosswalk and squish him into the back of a bus. Tesla style. The fire will destroy all evidence so FBI will have notin' on me! Except my bitcoins.


Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:35 | 4130382 GetZeeGold
GetZeeGold's picture



Opt for the court ordered anal probe option. It's a little pricey....but it's the best 8 hours of you're not officially arrested life you'll ever have.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:45 | 4130431 Enslavethechild...
EnslavethechildrenforBen's picture

I hear the NSA have them installed in the heated seats front and rear.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:12 | 4130571 Joe Davola
Joe Davola's picture

C'mon gubermint, let's fund them hyperlupes - free rides on rainy days!

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 14:03 | 4131703 Isotope
Isotope's picture

Interesting comments on this by Peter De Lorenzo, a retired industry veteran, on his website Second half of the page:

"What I’ve found out about the Tesla is this: There is a reason for fires upon impact with the Model S and it has nothing to do with the batteries themselves but how the batteries are – or are not, as the case may be - protected in the vehicle.

We all know Elon is a genius and that Tesla is the miracle of the new automotive world, but the fact remains that the miracle workers at Tesla skipped a step. It’s something that GM – you know, that tired old rust-belt auto company from a bygone era – learned while developing the Volt. The GM engineering team zeroed in on a critical area of concern with the Volt’s batteries when it came to protecting them upon impact, something like, “Gee, if someone were to really crash one of these things there could be a problem with the batteries, so, we better do something about it.” So the GM development team triple-wrapped the Volt battery pack to reduce the chance of “piercing” during accidents.

And guess what? The “piercing” of the batteries is exactly what caused the two post-crash fires in the Model S. Why? The Tesla development team chose to single-wrap the Tesla batteries, thus leaving the batteries less protected and more exposed during incidents, which is a giant heaping, steaming bowl of Not Good, when it comes right down to it."

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 14:14 | 4131741 Freddie
Freddie's picture


I mean WTf is with this?   This is typical nor cal silicon valley BS.  We are so much smarter than all of you.  Yeah at being whores who sell out to the spy agencies to spy on everyone.  We come up with the best IPO scams.

We make the best cars that catch on fire and scam solar companies to rip off taxpayers.

You would think Elon would have spent $2 a vehicle for a little plastic and bubble wrap.  What a moron.

Just like Ford who saved $3 on a Pinto to avoid a cheap peiece of plastic shield to protect the gas tank.  Elon Musk is an idiot and the people who fawn over him are even bigger idiots.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:35 | 4130386 outamyeffinway
outamyeffinway's picture

Is this the Big 3 buying Tesla cars and lighting them on fire? Wouldn't put it past them.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:47 | 4130439 Enslavethechild...
EnslavethechildrenforBen's picture

no, this is Tesla lighting itself on fire.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 12:21 | 4131187 BigJim
BigJim's picture

I wonder if they're beginning to regret sourcing their batteries from Boeing.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:49 | 4130449 PP
PP's picture

need a fire insurance combine sale with Tesla. (110% full coverage to estimate human body price)

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:21 | 4130599 smithcreek
smithcreek's picture

If you were to point out that a GM and Telsa fight would be yet another example of inter-agency governmental fighting, like that between the FBI and CIA it might make sense.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 11:23 | 4130905 Freddie
Freddie's picture

<--- Elon Musk = Insane genius

<--- Elon Musk = total douchebag & friend of Obama

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:14 | 4130560 Winston Churchill
Winston Churchill's picture

I wonder if Elon will drive one down to the bankruptcy court when Tesla files

chapter 7.

A well worn and travelled route in history for electric vehicle ' innovators'.

The real Tesla couldn't crack the battery problem ,and Elon ain't no Tesla.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:18 | 4130602 freedogger
freedogger's picture

Are the batteries even stored up there in the front of the car where it looks like the fire was?

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:30 | 4130644 earnyermoney
earnyermoney's picture

I remember reading an article that stated the battery resides in a compartment near the front passeger side of the car.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:23 | 4130326 JustObserving
JustObserving's picture

Not to worry.  Tesla is the safest car in this world when not on fire.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:41 | 4130401 LetThemEatRand
LetThemEatRand's picture

Pretty soon Tesla will start running ads that look like pharmaceutical ads.  The first 15 seconds will tell you about what a great car it is.  The next 45 seconds will consist of warnings and disclaimers.  "If you feel your flesh melting away while using Tesla, discontinue use immediately and see your fireman.  Tesla may cause unexpected skin blistering.  If you are allergic to smoke, talk to your doctor before chosing Tesla...."

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:45 | 4130432 Platinum
Platinum's picture

I'm sure they're working on hiding it in the fine print of the car sale/lease.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:04 | 4130531 Down Vote
Down Vote's picture

eh, wake me when the engine is 80 yards behind the car.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:08 | 4130551 superflex
superflex's picture

It's a Tesla dude.  No Engine.  

Just batteries, electric motors and unicorn farts for the 1%.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 11:22 | 4130898 Freddie
Freddie's picture

Classic line from the kid who shot the first video in his Wash state accent:

"Oh dude it's a Tesla!"


Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:21 | 4130330 zipit
zipit's picture

I love the smell of Tesla in the morning...

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:22 | 4130331 irie1029
irie1029's picture

"The Model S lithium-ion battery did not catch fire at any time before, during or after the NHTSA testing. It is worth mentioning that no production Tesla lithium-ion battery has ever caught fire in the Model S or Roadster, despite several high speed impacts. While this is statistically unlikely to remain the case long term, Tesla is unaware of any Model S or Roadster occupant fatalities in any car ever."  


Seems that there are a bunch of caveots.  I wonder if they will offer double indemnity in case of fire.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:04 | 4130527 BandGap
BandGap's picture

When the test batteries are produced, it is under pristine conditions.  What they sent to the NHTSA were batteries produced under pristine conditions. I also wonder if the NHTSA has protocols for testing these batteries that are sufficient (including stress testing).

Lab produced batteries vs. assembly line batteries. Which do you think best reflects the performance of the vehicles being sold?

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 11:31 | 4130932 Freddie
Freddie's picture

Someone should have a an indep testing lab crash one.  I am getting a feeling the NHTSA crash test was bullshit because Elon/Tesla are a friend of O.   All these O loving companies get ramp up by algo/HFT trading to pump the stocks.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:22 | 4130334 TheBoyPlunger
TheBoyPlunger's picture

Maybe Tesla will have a fire sale to bring back customers?

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:22 | 4130336 youngman
youngman's picture

That has to do something to the insurance rates I would assume....a little crash and your car gets totaled....can´t rebuild melted plastic...

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:24 | 4130339 Max Damage
Max Damage's picture

Don't Worry Elon will explain that a piece of moon debris the size of mars, hit the underside of the car, and punched a black hole in the battary shield. This rare event caused a fire which the occupant walked away from. If this happened to a normal car the moon debris would have squashed the car, before casusing it to explode, killing all the occupants including Jack the collie dog.

The offending Debris is now back at Tesla, and we ain't going to let anyone see it...

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:27 | 4130354 Danielius
Danielius's picture

Car B Q.... I think that is so funny. Damn why didn't I think of that!

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:28 | 4130356 Salt
Salt's picture

Soon they'll be including NOMEX suits as an option.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:28 | 4130359 dbach
dbach's picture

Give me a fucking break ZH. I'm getting tired of this hyberbolic reporting on electric cars and then the next post is how we are gonna run out of oil and everyone will have to bike/walk everywhere. I drive a Leaf, and I will never go back to an ICE, its quieter, smoother, no maintenance and it is 1/10 of the fuel cost. When you drive an ICE car, you're effectively sitting on a bomb; its just the nature of dense energy storage, it is inherently dangerous.

Stop being so petty ZH, its becoming boring. If you want to ding TSLA, its the stock that has a problem, not the company.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:50 | 4130451 SilverIsKing
SilverIsKing's picture

" its the stock that has a problem, not the company. "

So you mean the guy was driving around with a bunch of TSLA stock certificates in the glove box and they instantaneously combusted?

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:26 | 4130629 dbach
dbach's picture

I suspect that because TSLA is one of the overpriced, overhyped MOMOs of the year, Tyler loves to take a jab at it. My point is I came to ZH back in the day because I was looking for insightful analysis. This is article (with increasing frequency it seems like) are the opposite of Yahoo Finance 'buy TSLA at any price' articles, a 'sell everything at any price (except gold)', but its the same kind of stupid. I had come to expect a higher standard from ZH.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:40 | 4130677 Agstacker
Agstacker's picture

"My point is I came to ZH back in the day because I was looking for insightful analysis."


Then why don't you just cancel your subscription?

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 12:24 | 4131207 BigJim
BigJim's picture

I hear there's a full money back guarantee!

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:50 | 4130454 Enslavethechild...
EnslavethechildrenforBen's picture

Tesla engineer Bill Underwood quit because Tesla wanted him to sign off on unsafe electrical. You going to blame ZH for that too?

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:13 | 4130576 superflex
superflex's picture

No ones being petty.

I dont hear of fires with the Nissan Leaf, the Mistubishi i MieV or other economical plug in electrics which run on dirty coal.

Just Telsa and the billions of taxpayer dollars they received to make a car for the 1%.



Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:17 | 4130598 Azannoth
Azannoth's picture

I bike to work already! because Gas is too damn expensive. Driving in Europe has become almost a luxury.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:21 | 4130610 shovelhead
shovelhead's picture

Rate X Kwh. per charge = ?

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:30 | 4130642 dbach
dbach's picture

My marginal rate for electric is 5.5 cents/kWh and I get 4 miles/kWh, $0.01375/mi on electric. With ICE, I was getting 28 mpg at $4 gallon, $0.143/mi.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 16:59 | 4132394 jerry_theking_lawler
jerry_theking_lawler's picture

I really have no clue and am looking for accurate information...what is the frequency and cost of battery change outs?

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 13:25 | 4131534 malek
malek's picture

Nice trolling.

it is 1/10 of the fuel cost  because you suckers pay for the electricity subsidies that make recharging my figLeaf so cheap!

the nature of dense energy storage  see the energy storage of my batteries is much less dense, and I declare this problem to be a feature! I also will never ever want to drive further than 50 miles away from my home.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:31 | 4130370 Cacete de Ouro
Cacete de Ouro's picture

Looks like the Tesla engineers took the brief too seriously...

Tired of your Barbecue? Use a Tesla Coil!

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:43 | 4130420 GetZeeGold
GetZeeGold's picture



Behind the scenes of the Tesla teleportation research.


Not quite perfected...but they're working on it.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:55 | 4130374 Common_Cents22
Common_Cents22's picture

Meh, I'll reserve judgement at this point.   The spotlight is on the company, like a lamborghini catching fire gets lots of media attention.


Here are some recent car fire stats:


Car fires are 14% of fire dept fire responses nationally.   That is alot of car fires.  

You gotta love Elon.  He is a true entrepreneurial maverick who gets things done.  He puts his entire fortune on the line.   He has a level of honesty and integrity unseen in todays CEO's.   He is a national treasure.   

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:15 | 4130586 superflex
superflex's picture

You can remove Elon's dick from you mouth any time now.

I cant wait to give Elon some of my taxpayer dollars to develop the Hyperloop. An idea introduced in 1956.  Mass transit for the 1%.


Thu, 11/07/2013 - 12:32 | 4131248 Common_Cents22
Common_Cents22's picture

so let me get this straight.  If there were federal financial incentives for your business, YOU WOULDN"T TAKE THEM???


I agree there shouldnt be taxpayer funded BS, but as a business owner, you'd be a FOOL not to take them if they were available.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 11:06 | 4130820 Non Passaran
Non Passaran's picture

> Car fires are 14% of fire dept fire responses nationally. That is alot of car fires.

Because 14% is a lot? 14% of how much?
Or because firemen like to go out for anything to justify their existence.

> You gotta love Elon. He is a true entrepreneurial maverick who gets things done.

Like Obama, he's really good at destroying taxpayer money.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 11:41 | 4130975 Freddie
Freddie's picture

Elon is a douchebag and FOO aka friend of Obama.  Also wasn't Musk's family one of those lib white South Africans who wanted apartheid ended but had their bags packed because they knew what was going to happen?   Note - I am not for apartheid but these liberal hypocrites bailed on SA on day one.  I have run in to more than one. 

I do not hate hybrids or electrics.  I think some of the Ford stuff is good along with Toyo but battery technology is not there yet and may never get there.  The BMW i3, and i8 look interesting and I will be curious to see what the Germans do. 

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 12:35 | 4131269 Common_Cents22
Common_Cents22's picture

I think the oppty for electric cars/ electric golf carts are in dense urban areas where commutes are short and parking is at a premium.  For people to consider buying who may not even have a car, there are millions of those.

At present, it's not going to be for the average person living in the burbs.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 17:04 | 4132408 Mark_BC
Mark_BC's picture

My Nissan Leaf is great, it hasn't expoded yet or required any maintenance that a regular car does besides rotating the tires. The 100 mile range isn't that big of a problem, that's why they have charge stations in strategic locations.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:35 | 4130388 Platinum
Platinum's picture

Sir! The stockholders are ReVolting!

Double pun anyone?

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:38 | 4130398 Danielius
Danielius's picture

I don't want a Tesla because I don't like the name.  I like Subaru. I live in Lithuania, and that name translates to...  "with a bar"  bar as in place you drink.  What does my comment have to do with anything?  


Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:39 | 4130399 hankwil74
hankwil74's picture

Has anyone been hurt in any of these accidents?  If no, then TSLA still seems pretty safe.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 11:02 | 4130794 Non Passaran
Non Passaran's picture

Investors who bought Tesla shares lately have surely been hurt a lot. And I like it!

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:40 | 4130402 Cacete de Ouro
Cacete de Ouro's picture

I'll stick with my VW air cooled thank you very much

Looks like the Tesla need to put a pool of water under the hood...->

"The Model S has the advantage in the front of not having a large gasoline engine block, thus creating a much longer crumple zone to absorb a high speed impact. This is fundamentally a force over distance problem – the longer the crumple zone, the more time there is to slow down occupants at g loads that do not cause injuries. Just like jumping into a pool of water from a tall height, it is better to have the pool be deep and not contain rocks. The Model S motor is only about a foot in diameter and is mounted close to the rear axle, and the front section that would normally contain a gasoline engine is used for a second trunk."

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:41 | 4130409 Beatscape
Beatscape's picture

Another view of the burning car -- prices starting at $101,500

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:50 | 4130424 Common_Cents22
Common_Cents22's picture

Here is a badass electric built on a infinti g35 chassis, currently at SEMA show in Vegas.  Most builds will keep the gas engine tho.   This guy is a SUPER design talent, doing this car nearly single handedly in less than a year.!video/c1qlo

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:45 | 4130429 strayaway
strayaway's picture

Gasoline is flamable. There were 270,000 vehicle fires and 270 resultant deaths in the US in 2011.If they aren't Tesla fires, they aren't news. 

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:39 | 4130674 Mi Naem
Mi Naem's picture

The man speaks the truth - a very inconvenient thing to do when we're having so much fun raggin' on the company. 

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 11:01 | 4130781 Non Passaran
Non Passaran's picture

In % of total cars sold, please

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 11:34 | 4130947 GetZeeGold
GetZeeGold's picture


Thank you.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 13:32 | 4131572 malek
malek's picture

And all these vehicle fires started by themselves, so no accident or other serious adverse event involved?
And all the resulting deaths happened because the fire spread so quickly the occupants couldn't get out fast enough??

You need to wake up.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:52 | 4130437 yogibear
yogibear's picture

Like mission impossible. Self-destructing cars. 

They need a fire  extinguishing system as standard equipment. 


Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:47 | 4130438 Seasmoke
Seasmoke's picture

Give everyone in Congress a Tesla for Christmas

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:48 | 4130445 Seasmoke
Seasmoke's picture

Very bullish when The Tesla lease gets to be too much.....just tap the bumper of the car in front of you.......and you are out of your lease 

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:58 | 4130499 El Hosel
El Hosel's picture

Stock is still a buy, the CEO is a cult hero and the super rich like his car/lighter.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 09:58 | 4130500 Beatscape
Beatscape's picture

Lithium-ion batteries may suffer thermal runaway and cell rupture if overheated or overcharged, and in extreme cases this can lead to combustion. To reduce these risks, lithium-ion battery packs contain fail-safe circuitry that shuts down the battery when its voltage is outside the safe range. When handled improperly, or if manufactured defectively, some rechargeable batteries can experience thermal runaway resulting in overheating. Sealed cells will sometimes explode violently if safety vents are overwhelmed or nonfunctional. 

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:07 | 4130542 Canoe in the Desert
Canoe in the Desert's picture

Press release: Shocking development! New government program: Obamacar for everyone - eliminates the need for health care death panels. Dual purpose glove box can smoke a brisket in 3 hours.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:08 | 4130550 diogeneslaertius
diogeneslaertius's picture

chinese EV refarm

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:13 | 4130574 Azannoth
Azannoth's picture

This car is definitely not safe for any (anti-government) journalists and anybody on the MIAC Report list, plausible deniability, bitchez!

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:21 | 4130580 freedogger
freedogger's picture

C'mon this is just another guy following the FZP-TLT profit plan:


1. Finance with Zero down

2. load up on Puts

3. Torch it Live on Twitter

Best investment idea EVAR!

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 14:54 | 4130661 Mi Naem
Mi Naem's picture

You read my mind. 

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 11:40 | 4130971 Common_Cents22
Common_Cents22's picture

HAHAAH,  nice trading strategy!!!


We need a name for it.


Torch n dump?


Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:17 | 4130594 safe as milk
safe as milk's picture

lithium batteries are dangerous in this application. eventually they will work it out but i wouldn't want to be a beta-tester expecially at those prices. another thing i haven't seen mentioned is that the tesla has ridiculously low ground clearance. i bet these things bottom out on potholes...

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 14:56 | 4131942 Mark_BC
Mark_BC's picture

Bottom clearance adjusts automatically and can be manually adjusted if ou are in snow or going up a steep driveway.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:23 | 4130618 waterwitch
waterwitch's picture

And here I was already to trade my Volt in for one of these babies!

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:36 | 4130662 macroeconomix
macroeconomix's picture

I didn't remember the same fuss over Mercedes' exploding car:



Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:40 | 4130676 ToNYC
ToNYC's picture

Energy-density of lithium is real-time testing the thought experiment of what if dirty gas (poorly-refined) could be self-igniting? You can drive lithium, until lithium drives you.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 11:05 | 4130814 MontgomeryScott
MontgomeryScott's picture

Tell me honestly;

Are the same 'engineers' working on both the tesla AND the 787 Screamliner?

Just wonderin'...

Wasn't the battery, tho. The Au-tor-ities told me:

WAIT! unplug your damned chargers!

It was the, no, it wasn't the battery...

I gotta drive my Tesla to the grope-port now. Anyone got a good fire insurance plan?

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 11:34 | 4130949 syntaxterror
syntaxterror's picture

Any tips on how to set one of these pieces of shit on fire?

I'm thinking New Years Eve will be a great time for free fireworks.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 11:44 | 4130983 djsmps
djsmps's picture

Shut the door.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 16:01 | 4132205 syntaxterror
syntaxterror's picture

Awww, did I hurt someone's feelings?

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 11:43 | 4130979 Father Lucifer
Father Lucifer's picture

Time to get these lithium time bombs off the roads. Where's the recalls.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 14:54 | 4131930 Mark_BC
Mark_BC's picture

If you'll notice, the cabin was unaffected. Everyone got out safely, since the battery compartment is designed this way. I'm not sure of the specifics of the latest fire, but hte last one was caused by a curved piece of mental from the road jamming up ino the uderside of the car with huge frces, something that would have caused a gasolin epowered car probbaly even more damage. And with that incident too, the cain was unaffected and everyone got out no problem. Safety record? Remiains perfect as far as I can tell, no injuries.

You know, sometimes gasoline powered cars catch fire after accidents too! Ever watch the A Team?

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 15:25 | 4131971 Mark_BC
Mark_BC's picture

Great to see all the support Americans can give to one of the few shining examples of innovation left in their country! That's it boys, kick them while they're down, distort the facts to make it seem worse than it is, and support he dinosaur-burning stats qup that's been suppressing you and addicting you to expensive oil for 40 years!

Go on, continue to believe that almost half of your oil ISN'T imported via the trade deficit. Go on, continue to deny the fact that US oil production is now 2/3 of what is was in 1970. The US is well beyond Peak Oil, and the cynical denialists here can only denigrate the growing pains of a company that is offering you a way out. That's the 'Murican way! No wonder your country's going down the toilet, wat a bunch of ignorant luddites y'all are.

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 18:41 | 4132777 prmths2
prmths2's picture

Thomas Alva Edison once said "When a man begins to talk about batteries, it brings out his latent capacity for lying."

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 23:19 | 4133816 monad
monad's picture

He also electrocuted an elephant to prove that Tesla's AC system wasn't as good as his batteries. Which is about on par with the guys who gave an elephant too much LSD.

Fri, 11/08/2013 - 04:25 | 4134326 prmths2
prmths2's picture

Topsy the elephant was going to be hanged for killing a sadistic trainer, but the ASPCA objected. Edison offered electrocution as a more humane method (criminals were already being electrocuted in 1903). Edison seldom missed an opportunity to magnify the danger of alternating current and had already electrocuted other animals in attempts to discredit AC, but that wasn't the primary purpose in electrocuting the elephant. The elephant was  given 460 grams of potassium cyanide with carrots just prior to the electrocution. Edison filmed the electrocution and it was released nationally. AC is more dangerous than DC, particularly at high frequencies, but its advantages greatly outweigh the somewhat greater danger at 60Hz.

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