by Jaclyn Trop
For the third time in six weeks, a Tesla Model S was destroyed by a fire after its battery was damaged, prompting new questions over the design of its advanced lithium-ion batteries.
The accident occurred on Wednesday afternoon on a highway in Smyrna, Tenn., near Nashville, after the car struck a tow hitch lying in the roadway, sparking an electrical fire, according to the Tennessee Highway Patrol. The driver pulled the car over to the emergency lane and was unhurt, authorities said.
The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration said it would investigate the accident. The agency “will contact the local authorities who are looking into the incident to determine if there are vehicle safety implications that merit agency action,” it said in a statement on Thursday.