New York (AFP) – Tesla Motors was under another round of scrutiny on Monday after a homemade video of a Tesla sedan on fire went viral but the incident did not weigh on shares.
Actress Mary McCormack posted a video on Twitter of her husband’s car with flames spewing from the bottom part of the Tesla. McCormack is married to director Michael Morris.
“This is what happened to my husband and his car today,” McCormack said in a Twitter post that went viral.
McCormack, who has starred in the series “West Wing” and “Murder One,” attached a 45-second video of a black Tesla sedan with orange flames coming out of the lower part of the vehicle. The video had been viewed about 1.2 million times by around 1800 GMT on Monday.
“No accident, out of the blue, in traffic on Santa Monica Blvd.,” she said. “Thank you to the kind couple who flagged him down and told him to pull over. And thank god my three little girls weren’t in the car with him.”
In a subsequent Twitter post, McCormack said the vehicle was not on Autopilot, the Tesla system with some autonomous features that has been involved on some earlier high-profile accidents.
Tesla said it was working to understand the cause of the accident.
“This is an extraordinarily unusual occurrence, and we are investigating the incident to find out what happened,” a company spokeswoman said.
“Our initial investigation shows that the cabin of the vehicle was totally unaffected by the fire due to our battery architecture, which is designed to protect the cabin in the very rare event that a battery fire occurs,” the spokesman added,” the Tesla spokeswoman added. “We’re glad our customer is safe.”
Tesla also shared information on the incident with the National Transportation Safety Board, which is sending an expert to study Tesla’s examination of the vehicle.
“The observation will provide the agency with an opportunity to learn more about fires in all types of battery-powered vehicles,” an NTSB spokesman said.
Despite these incidents, Tesla still enjoys strong support among many investors who have high expectations for the company and its chief, Elon Musk.
Shares of Tesla rose 2.7 percent to $367.95 in afternoon trading in New York.