A giant Tesla battery pack burst into flames during testing, and it took 150 firefighters 4 days to put out

·2 min read
Tesla CEO Elon Musk wearing a construction helmet.
Tesla's big battery in Australia burst into flames during testing on Friday, Australian authorities said. REUTERS/Michele Tantussi/File Photo
  • A huge Tesla battery pack was on fire for four days until firefighters managed to put it out.

  • The "Megapack," at an upcoming Australian power project, caught fire in a trial, authorities said.

  • It took 150 firefighters and more than 30 fire trucks to extinguish the fire, they said.

  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

A Tesla "Megapack" battery pack caught fire during testing on Friday, and it took firefighters four days to extinguish the blaze, Australian local authorities said on Monday.

A Megapack is Tesla's largest battery product, and can store energy generated by solar panels or wind turbines. The Victorian Big Battery project, where the fire started on Friday morning, is made up of 210 Megapacks.

The fire at the project in Victoria, Australia, was under control as of Monday afternoon local time, the Country Fire Authority (CFA) said in a statement.

Around 150 firefighters and more than 30 fire trucks and other support vehicles were called to the scene to tackle the fire, according to the CFA.

Firefighters "found a 13-tonne lithium battery inside a shipping container was fully involved," the CFA said. The exact cause of the fire is still unknown but will be investigated, the CFA said.

The battery plant, first announced in 2019, was built by French renewable energy giant Neoen using Tesla's 300 megawatt battery packs. Neoen said in a statement that the battery plant is on track to be operational by the end of next year, and will be able to power local homes.

Firefighters haven't found any more fires at the project, according to authorities. They will stay on the scene as a precaution, the CFA added.

On Monday morning local time, the CFA reported that the fire had died down but still wasn't under control.

"There was one battery pack on fire to start with, but it did spread to a second pack that was very close to it," Ian Beswicke, CFA incident controller and a district assistant chief fire officer, said in the statement.

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